Call of Duty 4 - interview

Do the SAS missions break up the pace of the game? Is there more stealth?

Grant Collier: Yeah, we've included a lot more stealthy elements. As you saw in the trailer, we showed off the guy in the guile suit, which is the guy covered with branches. That wasn't a cut-scene. I don't know why people say these are all cut-scenes. We don't have cut-scenes!

But we're really pushing the stealthy aspects of the game a lot further with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.

Also I think it's a question of pace and this whole issue of things being more like an episodic TV series. You want to break up the pace. Call of Duty 2 was pretty much full-on intensity from start to finish, and there's more variety in the pace in Modern Warfare.

We take the player up to 10 and then down to six, up to 9, down to 7, then up to 11, then down to seven. Instead of keeping the player in the red all the time and just burning them out, we'd like to change things up a lot, throw new things at the player that are still as exciting as the last one, it just tickles a different part of your brain.

What are the main advancements you've made on the technology side?

Grant Collier:
One of the technological things we have is the procedural clutter system that populates the world with stuff. So when there's an explosion, shit is going to be rolling across the floor.

We have accurate physics; we have a proprietary physics system which gives us the ragdoll and the destructibility of the vehicles and destructibility of parts of the environment.

Being able to have bullet penetration, so depending on thickness of wall and caliber of bullet, you've got accurate bullet penetration.

Will the new way the storyline's being presented mean a far more impressive ending that we've seen in previous Call of Duty games?

Grant Collier: Hopefully it'll be the best ending that we've ever had. It'll be the culmination of a really complicated storyline, so we're really able to deliver on the payoff unlike doing the campaigns in the other games.

Some campaigns would just end, and at the very end of the last campaign you storm the Reichstag or something like that. But now we have a really complex story that will finally all weave together in a very climatic fashion.

Finally, anything more you can tell us about Call of Duty 4 multiplayer?

Grant Collier: We've several things that we've done for the different multiplayer modes. We have classic Call of Duty, we have realism mode which is a mod that has been made by the community every single time that we come out with a Call of Duty game, where it's like one shot, one kill, regenerative health and all that crap.

We also have missions that have hard points. Hard points are pieces of territory that the player can fight over. For example, you have a beacon which calls in an attack helicopter - once you've taken control of the beacon, the attack helicopter comes and starts to strafe the enemy. They can knock the helicopter out the air and at that point it becomes neutral or after it takes a couple of passes.

We also have a radar tower that, once you take control of it - the mini-map is in multiplayer by the way, it's not in single-player - the mini-map will now show not just the friendlies on it but also the enemies on it until the enemies capture it.

So there's various hard points to give the player something to really fight over and some natural resource on the map.

June 18, 2007