We did a preview of Warlander recently and compared some of its combat elements of Star Wars games. In fact, some of its gameplay elements are also inspired by Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. We discussed the game with developer Clock Drive Games to know more about Warlander.
Segmentnext: Playing with the sentient sword it felt like wielding a lightsaber, was that the kind of feel you guy were going for?
Clock Drive Games: One of the inspiration for Warlander’s combat was Jedi Knight games – particularly Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy (and also Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance with its Blade mode). The idea that you can use a lightsaber and it can slice off someone’s hand or leg, or even decapitate the opponent or cut him in half was a thrill and something unique that remains connected to those games even today. Also, games like Chivalry – where you can attack the enemy and aim from different sides – and Dark Souls, with stamina based combat and careful timings, were influencing the development of Warlander’s combat as well.
But, we do have our own style that came from combining all of these elements. The goal was to give the player maximum control of the blade. We felt games seldom let you choose where your blows land. It is an immersive combat element that came out of it.
Segmentnext: I didn’t see anything about consoles, are there any plans for it? Or does that depend on how the game performs financially on PC first?
Clock Drive Games: The game is planned to be released for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The game will be first released on PC, and later on consoles.
Segmentnext: Many developers are now making games with next-gen in mind and plan to release titles on PS5 and Xbox Scarlett. Is that the case with Warlander as well? I wouldn’t mind a remastered Warlander for PS5 next year.
Clock Drive Games: For the time being, we are focusing on PS4 and Xbox One as platforms to distribute Warlander. There are no plans for next-generation consoles, at least for now.
Segmentnext: One thing I really missed while playing Warlander, especially when you look at the boss fights, are the finishing moves. I think those can add something to the combat experience, no? Dismembering tough, annoying bosses in slow-mo with a cool finisher would be amazing.
Clock Drive Games: While we agree that finishing moves look awesome, we wanted to give player bigger control over the gameplay, and not to switch it suddenly to cinematic feel, so we decided to avoid finishing moves and let the player kill the bosses in its own way.
Segmentnext: I usually game on Windows but on the go, I have a Macbook and I have a bit on it. I didn’t see Mac and Linux support on your Steam page. What about Mac and Linux users?
Clock Drive Games: There are no plans for Mac and Linux release at this point.
Segmentnext: One thing I would like to mention is the combat felt a bit stiff. Bruce stands still and just swings his arm in an awkward manner, doesn’t bend his back, there are no natural body movements that should be associated with such attack maneuvers. Is that something you would like to improve before the release?
Clock Drive Games: Definitely. We are working on improving the animation of the main character, and the combat as a whole, so we believe that the release version will have much more fluid and natural movements, as you said.
Warlander is releasing on PC in early 2020 and is coming to PS4 and Xbox One later on.