FUSE Interview with Creative Director Brian Allgeier
At the recent EA Showcase, Clare had the opportunity to interview Brian Allgeier, the Creative Director of FUSE, where they spoke about new beginnings, game mechanics, shadowy conspiracies and more. The full transcript is below.
Fuse marks two big milestones for Insomniac – the first original IP for the studio and its first multiplatform release. How excited are the team about treading new ground and working on their own IP?
We’re extremely excited, we’ve always been an independent developer and I think a lot of people just assume we work for Sony because we’ve done so many games with them. The opportunity came up to work on our own IP and do cross platform and we jumped on it.
When Fuse was first announced, it was originally called Overstrike and had quite a different look to it. What made you decide to switch things up and rebrand the game?
All of our games have evolved over the years. When we created Ratchet and Clank it was originally called Girl with a Stick and then the girl turned into an Alien Lombax and the stick turned into a wrench. Each one of our games has evolved with us. Overstrike felt like the Mission Impossible game and so it was up to us to figure out how to push it in a direction that was fresh and new. We have latched on to the this alien subsuit and we drew inspiration from movies like District 9 as well as Mission Impossible but that marriage really put us into a unique arena.
We know that Fuse is an action game that features four player co-op and a selection of weapons – can we expect to see any puzzle elements to the game or is it mostly action?
For the most part it’s action but we have a lot of traversing and what we call security set ups; areas where you need to work together to bypass security, so that does add a bit of a puzzle like element.
How much control will players have over their character’s appearance? Will there be un-lockable costumes and customization options similar to the pre-order bonuses already announced?
There are some plans for being able to customize your character. One of the things we are offering is Fuse credits that allow you to purchase gear to differentiate your characters.
Do you think character customization is becoming more popular amongst gamers?
I think so – people like to show off their own personal flair.
As you progress through the game and accumulate Fuse points, do you earn those points as a squad or individually? Are the points tied to the character you earned them with or can you spend them on any character’s skill tree?
There are a couple of different parts to our progression system. You earn Fuse points to upgrade your character. For example if you’re playing as Dalton you can play as Dalton but if you decide to switch to Izzy you end up upgrading her and you can do this on the fly with our Leap feature. But then you also have team perks that are earned by completing challenges and these are benefits that go across the entire team
How do character builds work in multiplayer games? If a player joins my game, do they use my characters? Or are their builds brought into my game?
Well essentially you have your own profile, your own character traits, so if you were to join my game you would bring in your character traits over to my game.
For instance you’re playing Izzy and you’ve unlocked the Med Beacon that can heal characters but my Izzy has not unlocked the Med Beacon, well when I play as Izzy I will not have the med beacon but if you where to jump into my game and played Izzy you would have the Med Beacon
Who has been the favourite character to play as around the Insomniac offices?
It changes on a weekly basis, this week it happens to be Naya Deveraux and she has the warp riffle which allows her to make those black holes. But I also like being the stealth class. I like going invisible, sneaking around and a lot of people don’t know this but when you’re in the stealth class you can actually go in as a support role, go in and heal people and the enemy can’t shoot you so I like that option.
The character Izzy is described as an information broker. Ali Hillis voices both Izzy and Liara T’Soni in the Mass Effect series, who was also an information broker. Co-incidence, or shadowy conspiracy?
Shadowy Conspiracy (accompanies answer with a fun and evil laugh).
One word that best describes FUSE?
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Save Game would like to thank both EA and Brian Allgeier for taking the time to answer our questions.