Mercury Meltdown: Developer interview

Friday 23 June 2006
Archer MacLean's Mercury is still one of the most original games you'll find for PSP. Its simple 'roll the blob around the obstacle course' puzzle premise may have been easy to grasp, but was notoriously difficult to master - devilish level design and strict time limits made the game too tricky for some.

With Mercury Meltdown - which is due for release this September - developer Ignition is hoping to address the main grumbles aimed at the original, while also evolving the core gameplay and slapping a lick of funky-fresh paint over the design. We rolled some questions in the direction of Ignition studio manager Ed Bradley to find out what Meltdown will have to offer...

Mercury was regarded as one of PSP's most innovative games. How will Meltdown build on the success of its predecessor - what are the key new features?
Mercury was one of the first releases on PSP and it was a fine balance of implementing ideas and also meeting very tight deadlines.

We are very proud of the first title but we believe that Mercury Meltdown will present some of the ideas we would have loved to implement the first time around but, with time constraints, we could not. This time around we were free to test ideas and be more adventurous, as we had the core game-play mechanics nailed down. Plus, we now have a greater understanding of the technology we are working on.

As for the new features, there has been a big change to the Mercury blob itself which now has four varying 'states' - normal, solid, fast and slow. We have twice as many levels as before, downloadable content, game share and multiplayer modes, to name but a few additions...

Could you tell us a bit more about the downloadable content for Meltdown - will it just be new levels?
At this stage details are yet to be confirmed but, yes, levels are something we are looking at initially. We are working with Sony Europe on this and the content will be accessible via its website (

Matt Cundy
I don't have the energy to really hate anything properly. Most things I think are OK or inoffensively average. I do love quite a lot of stuff as well, though.