一篇将刊登在下月出版的Computer Games Magazine上的采访.
Chris Taylor and the Supremes
The creator of Total Annihilation talks about his next real-time strategy game, Supreme Commander.
Chris Taylor was born in British Columbia and has been fooling around in the games industry since the late 1980’s when he worked on Hardball II for Distinctive Software/Accolade. This title earned Taylor the Software Publishers Association (SPA) award for “Best Sports Game of the Year.” He continued his “sports career” with 4D Boxing and the original Triple Play Baseball for Electronic Arts.
In 1997, Taylor moved to Seattle and Cavedog Games, where he helped create the legendary real-time strategy game Total Annihilation. The Core Contingency expansion came along the next year, just about the time Taylor decided to move on and start his own company. From the newly formed Gas Powered Games came Dungeon Siege and its sequel. After this string of RPG’s, Taylor is returning to strategy gaming with Supreme Commander, which is scheduled for release next year. Many people are calling this game the spiritual sequel to Total Annihilation. In this interview, Taylor shares some of his design techniques and philosophies.
CGOnline: Total Annihilation was massive in scope and balance. Where do you start on a project like Supreme Commander?
Chris Taylor: Since I left Cavedog, I had a list of all the things I wanted to see in the next RTS game I bought. I’d bring these games home and rub my hands together and be all excited. And there were genuine innovations, but only a fifth as many as I wanted. Many of these I’m keeping secret. I had this list grow, and grow, and grow in my mind – that was one place to start.
I decided it’s going to be three factions. I wanted less symmetry in the experience. I drew a pie chart and put one virtue into each of the three pie sections, and I drew one shortcoming in each one as well. for every positive thing, you get some terrible, nasty baggage. I built from the ground up these back-histories and stories. We created a timeline for the universe. The timeline starts 2006 Earth time, and it takes you all the way to when game starts. That’s where I started. The feature set was coming from one place as a pure RTS player. As a person, I’m 39. I’m much deeper and much more complex than I was when I was 29 and I started working on TA. Everything I do now comes from this rich place.
CGOnline: What are some of the refinements you’re after with Supreme Commander, and some of the clichés you put at the top of your “No!” list?
Chris Taylor: I don’t dislike RTS games, I just don’t like how fast they’re advancing. I don’t dislike my truck, but I dislike that it took the automotive industry 50 years to put in an automatic headlight switch.
The number one thing about RTS games that I hate is that I don’t feel like I have control of the units. When I grab them and tell them to move, I have no idea how they’re going to get there. They start moving and say, “No, no, no, no!” In Supreme Commander, you get the ability to set down waypoints. The length of time it’s going to take units to get to those waypoints is displayed on the screen. Then you can grab another group of units and put them on the same waypoints and do what we call a co-ordinated attack.
I wrote a big section in our design document about real war. If you’re a general in a tent and you tell your colonel, “I want you to move these men up on the hill and put up some artillery,” in current RTS games, he says, “Yes sir!” and leaves the tent. In real war, the general would look at the colonel and the colonel would say, “We’re all unpacked here and it’ll take two days to get up there, and we’re running low on ammo.” He would give you all this info before, not during, not after, but before he moves a single unit.
In RTS games today, everything just starts moving. I call that whole interface in Supreme Commander the “What if?” interface. By taking your cursor and clicking somewhere, you get this info and the “what if?” That’s something we’re pushing for “What if?” is a big, big question.
It’s almost like in chess, solving “however many moves” deep. The more “what ifs,” the longer it takes, the longer the player wants to wait, the more info they’re likely to get. We’re going to see how far we can push that. We’re already well down this road; before we start talking about features that will be on the back of the box, we need to talk about feedback. You don’t want feedback as the guys are rolling up the hill. This goes all the way back to Command & Conquer. If your harvester told you where it was going to go, how many times could you have saved your harvester from going into the enemy base?
Strategy happens before the battle; tactics happen during the battle. This is why we have our full strategic view in Supreme Commander. When you zoom in close, you go to tactical. It’s all seamless, it’s all real-time. You get to go between strategic thinking and tactical thinking. You can give that same single order to that same single unite up there, or you can give orders to your entire army with one click.
CGOnline: Total Annihilation was one of the first games to really use the internet to distribute updates, new units, etc. And you did that stuff for free. So, will the folks controlling your purse strings allow you to do this again in the age of universal micropayments?
Chris Taylor: I have no doubt that we are going to release units. We’re going to release them at odd times. Total Annihilation’s weekly released units were great in some respects, but they were dictated by the calendar, not the game experience.
CGOnline:Are you addressing the weenie rush?
Chris Taylor: That’s easy. The maps are radically different in size. You can have 512s, as we call them, which are little grids. We go all the way up to 4000 (4K). Imagine a map that’s 1000x1000; that can take the better part of two hours to play. If you play on a 512, you’re a lot closer to each other. If you play 4K, it can take three to four hours just to find your opponent. If you like a rush game, you can play it.
I always favor the defender when we’re balancing the game, so the guy who rushes over is going to have a lot of trouble against a guy who builds defense. The map size of choice is probably going to have a much bigger impact than anyone has ever seen before. In Age of Empires II, you could build cavalry and be over in the other guy’s base in minutes; on a 4K map, in one of our supersonic Mach 3 planes on a 4K map, it took seven minutes to get from one side to the other.
Playing videogames that take a long time is bittersweet. You always wonder, “Is this the best way to spend my life?” But it kind of is.

[这个贴子最后由银河解放军在 2006/02/13 04:03am 第 1 次编辑]

512512地图只不过用来打打快攻,10001000地图上的战斗可以持续2个小时这可以理解,但"If you play 4K, it can take three to four hours just to find your opponent. "作何解释?这是否是指如果不借助电子侦察系统,单纯像现在大多数RTS那样用地面部队四处搜索的方式试图找到对手将需要3-4个小时?作为对比,AOE2里的骑兵用1分钟左右就能找到敌方的阵地.
另外,"Mach 3 planes"不知是不是指和那架大运输机相同等级的装备?用这玩意儿横穿4K*4K地图需要7分钟,也够长的.





总歼灭的创作者谈论他的下场实时战略游戏, 最高司令。
克里斯·泰勒出生在不列颠哥伦比亚省和无所事事在比赛产业从晚80 年代当他从事棒球II 为特别Software/Accolade 。 这个标题赢得了泰勒软件发行者协会(温泉) 褒奖为"年的最佳的体育游戏。“他继续了他的” 体育事业"以4D 拳击和原始的三杀棒球为电子艺术。
1997 年, 泰勒搬走了向西雅图和Cavedog 比赛, 他帮助创造传奇实时战略游戏共计歼灭。 核心意外情况扩展到来了明年, 关于时间泰勒被决定移动和建立他自己的公司。 最近被形成的气体供给动力的比赛来自土牢围困和它的续集。 在RPG’;s 以后这串, 泰勒回到战略赌博与最高司令, 明年预定于发行。 许多人称这场游戏精神续集共计歼灭。 在这次采访, 泰勒分享一些他的设计技术和哲学。
CGOnline: 总歼灭是巨型的在范围和平衡。 在哪里您开始在一个项目象最高司令?
克里斯·泰勒: 因为我留下Cavedog, 我有我想看在下场RTS 比赛我买所有事物的名单。 我会带来这些比赛在家和一起会摩擦我的手和会是所有激动。 并且有真正创新, 但唯一五和我要一样多。 许多这些我保留秘密。 我安排这张名单增长, 和增长, 和依我所见生长是一个地方开始的?C 。
我决定这是三个派别。 我想要较少对称在经验。 我得出了圆形统计图表和投入了一贤良入每个三个饼部分, 并且我画了一个缺点在每一个。 为每件正面事, 您得到一些可怕, 讨厌的行李。 我从新建立了这些历史和故事。 我们创造了时间安排为宇宙。 时间安排开始2006 地球时间, 并且它一直把您带对当游戏开始。 那是我开始了的地方。 特点集合来自一个地方作为一个纯净的RTS 球员。 作为人, 我是39 。 我比我更深和复杂的我是29 并且我开始从事TA 。 一切我现在来自这个富有的地方。
CGOnline: 一些是什么提炼您以后是以您投入在您的"没有上面的最高司令, 和一些clich3es!"名单?
克里斯·泰勒: 我不烦恶RTS 比赛, 我不喜欢多么他们快速地推进。 我不烦恶我的卡车, 但是我烦恶需要汽车制造业50 年投入在一个自动车灯开关。
第号一个事关于我恨的RTS 比赛是, 我不感到如我有单位的控制。 当我劫掠他们和劝告他们行动, 我没有想法怎么他们到那儿。 他们开始搬走和认为, "没有, 没有, 没有, 没有!"在最高司令, 您得到能力记下小站。 它采取单位得到对那些小站的时间被显示在屏幕。 然后您能劫掠其它小组单位和投入他们在同样小站和做什么我们称一次被协调的攻击。
我写一个大部分在我们的设计文件关于真正的战争。 如果您是一位将军在帐篷并且您告诉您的上校, “我要您移动这些人在小山并且投入一些火炮,” 在当前的RTS 比赛, 他说, "是先生!"并且叶子帐篷。 在真正的战争中, 将军会看上校并且上校会说, "我们全部被打开得这里并且将需要二天起来那里, 并且我们跑低在弹药。"他会给您所有这信息前面, 不是在期间, 不是以后, 但在他移动一个唯一单位之前。
RTS 比赛今天, 一切开始行动。 我称那个整体接口在最高司令"若呢?“接口。 由采取您的游标和点击某处, 您得到这信息和"若呢?“是某事我们若推挤为” 呢?“是一个大, 大问题。
它是几乎象在棋, 解决"然而许多移动” 深深。 更多"什么ifs,” 它长期采取, 球员长期想要等待, 更多信息他们可能得到。 我们看多远我们能推挤那。 我们已经是很好在这条路下; 在我们开始谈论将是在箱子的后面的特点之前, 我们需要谈论反馈。 您不想要反馈当人滚动小山。 这一直去回到命令& 征服。 如果您的收割机告诉您何处它打算是, 多少次您能从进入保存了您的收割机敌对基地?
战略发生在争斗之前; 战术发生在争斗期间。 这就是为什么我们有我们充分的战略意图在最高司令。 当您迅速移动关闭, 您去作战。 它是所有无缝的, 它是所有实时。 您得到去在战略认为和作战认为之间。 您能给那同样唯一次序对那同样唯一团结那里, 或您能发布命令您的整个军队以一点击。
CGOnline: 总歼灭是第一比赛的当中一个真正地使用互联网分布更新、新单位, 等。 并且您做了那种材料为自由。 如此, 伙计控制您的钱包串将允许您再做这在普遍micropayments 的年龄吗?
克里斯·泰勒: 我没有疑义, 我们发布单位。 我们发布他们在奇怪的时刻。 总歼灭的每周被发布的单位是伟大的在一些方面, 但他们由日历, 没有游戏经验未口授。
克里斯·泰勒: 那容易。 地图是根本地不同的在大小。 您能有512s, 如同我们叫他们, 是小的栅格。 我们一直去4000 (4K) 。 想象是1000x1000 的一张地图; 那可能需要二个小时的大部分演奏。 如果您演奏在512, 您是很多离彼此较近。 如果您演奏4K, 它可能需要三个到四个小时正义找到您的对手。 如果您喜欢仓促赛, 您能演奏它。
我总倾向防御者当我们平衡比赛, 如此冲有很多麻烦反对人建立防御的人。 选择的地图大小大概有更大的冲击比任何人以前曾经看见了。 在帝国的年龄II, 您能修造骑兵和结束在另一人的基地在分钟; 在4K 地图, 在一个我们的超音速Mach 中3 架飞机在4K 地图, 需要七分钟得到从一边对其他。
演奏采取的videogames 久时光是苦甜。 您总想知道, "这是最佳的方式度过我的生活吗?"仅它有点儿是。


[这个贴子最后由银河解放军在 2006/03/07 03:35am 第 1 次编辑]