A few months ago, Hard Reset was released for the PC. The Retro style FPS mas mostly met with positive reviews and really caught most gamers off guard since the game was announced and then released not too far apart. We had an apportunity to catch up with Flying Wild hog, the studio that created Hard Reset.
1. For those that are unaware, how did Flying Wild Hog get started?
We were all tired working in a corporate-like game companies. We wanted to create a more open-minded model fo a company, so we established Flying Wild Hog
seemingly come from different camps in terms of narrative experience.
How do you think that played out when it came to working on this
They are all very experienced specialists, so the genre is not such a big deal
:). I think our team did a great job with Hard Reset!
3. Comic book narratives are becoming popular as a method of
establishing backstory. Why did your team choose this medium of
narration for Hard Reset?
We have some great graphical artists in our team, and they wanted to show their skills. So when we noticed that the storyboard for the game looks great we have decided to add animated hand-drawn cutscenes to the game.
4. Tell us a little bit about the creation of Major Fletcher!
We were looking for a hero with a distinct features that would make him interesting. A flawless hero wouldn’t fit into the world of Hard Reset. So Fletcher was created – a traumatized alcoholic, who suffers from Novak’s Syndrome -
because of an accident several other personalities have been uploaded to his brain, and the only way to supress those personalities is drinking and medications. He is a part of the system, a system that is flawed.
5. Cyberpunk themes are fairly popular in today’s FPS and RPG gaming.
Do you think the style and culture of cyberpunk lends itself for good
The Cyberpunk genre itself gives a lot of possibilities and you can take different approaches towards it. For instance compare Appleseed to Ghost In The Shell.
The first one shows a utopian city and community while Ghost In The Shell shows a dystopian future.
Cyberpunk gives you the possibility to weave different worlds but giving you an impression of realism – 20 years ago touchpads were considered Sci-Fi but now everyone uses an iPhone – so we don’t really know what will happen in the future.
6. What would you ideally want fans to derive from Hard Reset in terms
of gameplay experience?
The answer is simple :) – Fun. And maybe some nostalgic feelings. Hard Reset was designed as a tribute to Doom and Quake and I think that we all played those two games.
Shooting in Hard Reset feels good, and it’s satisfying. If you know how to use the weapons you will be in the control of the battlefield and you will dominate the enemies.
7. You’ve created an entirely new engine for Hard Reset. What goals
did you have in mind when you did so?
We wanted to make a game that will run smoothly on any machine even a 5 year old PC and a game that would still look good. We have some great programmers, so we decided to write our own technology.
Road Hog gives us a lot of possibilities, especially with lighting, and it’s also flexible so we can add features for our designers on demand.
shadowed and gloomy, but incredibly beautiful. How much of an emphasis
was graphical capability when it came to designing the engine?
As said before – we wanted to have loads of dynamic lighting, not 5 or 10 ligtsources but hundreds of them. If you’ll look at Bezoar you can notice that it’s lit by artificial lights – neon signs, street lamps ATMs.
You will also note that the textures that we use are very sharp and you can see also material textures on each object in the game – walls aren’t flat, you will see scratches on all metallic surfaces etc.
9. Did you have any visual inspirations when it came to designing the
world of Hard Reset?
Yes – one of the main insirations were the artworks of Syd Mead- I think he is one of those artists who has the best ‘feeling’ of the genre.
10. Could you explain a little more about the depth of the upgrading system?
Weapons in Hard Reset allow you to control the situation, it depends solely on you how you choose to play – either defensive – purchasing crowd control addons like EMP Flechettes or Stasis Grenades to trap your foes and deliver the killing blows
while they are incapacitated or aggresive – purchasing Health and armor augmentations and blasting your way with the Shotgun or Cumulative Plasma mode – it’s all up to you.
11. You’ve had quite a few sites comment on your lack of quick saves.
Do you think a sense of difficulty is lost on today’s generation of
I think that games need to be challenging. Most of them have watered down diffuclty nowadays. Look at Super Mario – I remember that I died so many times while playing it, and often saw ‘Game Over’. Still I pushed on
and finally finished it, and it felt great. We wanted the players to experience a similar sense of accomplishment. Hard Reset was designed to be ‘Hard’ and you need skill and cunning to get through some fights, and some planning while
using the environment.
12. Where does the threshold lie between just the right amount of
difficulty and the right amount of gameplay time?
This depends on the player, some of them play games more casual and some are more hardcore. It’s really difficult to ascertain this threshold. I personally play all games on the highest possible difficulty settings, and always
explore the game as much as I can so the gameplay time for me is probably longer than for a regular gamer.
13. What are your long term goals as a independent developer?
We just want to make great games. Our first goal is to make an even
better game than Hard Reset, using all experience we gained during
Hard Reset’s production.
14. Do you plan to continue to release games around the thirty dollar
It’s really hard to say right now.
15. What kind of ideas are you toying with for your next release?
We love shooters, but also we really like RPGs :)
Thanks guys for taking the time to answer some of our questions! If you haven’t yet, take the opportunity to play Hard Reset, it boasts one of the coolest combat mechanics we have seen in quite awhile.