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Games  /  22 Sep 2016, 23:45
Dusk - An Interview with David Szymanski
Hot off the press is the first piece in my coverage of the pending boom that is the resurgence of the 90's fast pace arena shooter.... That was a mouthful.

I have conducted an Interview with David Szymanski who is the creator of the upcoming Quake1 styled shooter 'Dusk'. Make sure you check out the Trailer before continuing. This is one game to get excited about.

Open the full article to read the interview....
Engine: I have read that you are using the Unity engine for Dusk which I found to be a curious choice as I had previously only attributed this platform for use in mobile and cross platform games yet from what I understand this game will be PC only? Are you able to elaborate on your decision making in using the Unity engine over some of the other engines available on the market such as Unreal 4 Engine and what would have been my guess for the true Quake *feel*, the id Tech 2 (or later) engine?

Well the primary reason is that Dusk began as a hobby project for fun, and Unity is what I know how to use. That said, working in Unity does provide a lot of advantages a more era-appropriate engine like IdTech2 doesn't have. For instance, it's easy to provide options for modern graphical effects such as bloom and bump mapping. The goal is for Dusk to be able to look like both software mode Quake or a high-fidelity mod like Epsilon (and everything in between), depending on what the player wants. Of course it's possible to add those features to IdTech2, but with Unity it's the matter of a few lines of code at most.

Multiplayer: It has been reported that there will be a Multiplayer component to Dusk, a 1-on-1 mode. Can you give us some information on the specifics of the 1-on-1 gameplay mode? Will it be a deathmatch style of gameplay?

Multiplayer is still in the very early stages of planning, so very little is set in stone. We do know that it will be a deathmatch-focused experience, and I'll be taking a lot of cues from Quake III in terms of balancing and overall design.

Quakeworld: Are you able to tell me why you consider Reload to be the most fierce QW player of all time?

Honestly, I know very little about the Quakeworld multiplayer scene. I've always been primarily focused on singleplayer. So as I start working on Dusk's multiplayer component, I'm going to be playing a lot more Quake I-III, Unreal Tournament, etc to make sure I really understand what makes them work and what people will be expecting. And probably watching quite a few matches on youtube

Physics 1: What are your plans as far as the physics, movement and air control in the game? Are their plans to include full aircontrol in to the game to allow for bunnyhopping such as that found in Quake?

There's actually more air control in Dusk than Quake. In Quake, once you jump in a certain direction you're committed to that direction until you land, for the most part. Minor adjustments can be made but that's it (setting aside physics exploits). In Dusk, you have as much control over your character in the air as you do on the ground. That same degree of control extends to bunnyhopping. It's a much more accessible affair in Dusk, with a forgiving margin for jumps and easy directional changes just by turning. It's kind of half way between Quake and Painkiller. There's also rocket jumping of course, in addition to some unique abilities like slides and an unlocked y axis while you're in the air.

Physics 2: We've all see the awesome video showing the redneck portion of the game which we loved. One thing that caught my eye was hitting the jumppad and going completely upside down whilst still shooting at the enemy. It looked like he was going to land on his head? How does that affect the character when he lands (on his head)?

If the player lands while they're rotated outside the grounded range of the y axis, they simply do a Mirror's Edge-style roll back to upright. It's quick and simple and helps keep things from being too disorienting. It also feels really cool

Personal: Considering that you were only 3 when Doom came out, 4 when Heretic came out and 6 when Quake came out. How is it that you have such an affinity to these games? At what age did you start playing them and did you always prefer this era of FPS over some of the newer stuff that would have been coming out when you were a teenager?

Because my childhood gaming experiences were basically a decade behind what was actually current. We did own a Gamecube and (later) a Wii, but for some reason I was never drawn to consoles as much as PC. Sadly (or thankfully maybe in hindsight?) we didn't have a computer capable of running "modern" games. It actually wasn't until I left for college in 2008 that I had access to a computer that could play anything more recent than about 2001. In my early teens (around 14), when I didn't really have money to purchase anything for myself, I was downloading old FPS shareware on our dialup connection and praying it would run on my Windows 98 machine. When I eventually did have money to spend, while friends were playing Halo 2 and Medal of Honor on their consoles, I was buying used copies of Half-life and Chasm: The Rift on Amazon. And trying to figure out how I could make something like them in QBasic (spoiler: I couldn't). I guess that's where my love of old FPSs started, and it's just continued ever since. I've kept hunting up whatever old shooters I can get my hands on. I actually just played Heretic and Shadow Warrior for the first time last year. I think it's also around that time that I started wondering why indies weren't doing for oldschool FPS what they were doing for NES platformers (with a few exceptions: Strafe, Wrack, etc), which is part of why I ended up pursuing Dusk--I got sick of waiting for someone else to make the game I wanted to play.

Thanks again for your time David. I hope you will be willing to answer some follow up questions on the game once I've had the opportunity to sink my teeth in to it.
2016-09-23, 02:16
Great read, looking forward to your next interview!
2016-09-24, 02:03
Nice interview. Watched the trailer, looking forward to seeing more of this project.
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