Enemy Territory: Quake Wars
is, it’s fair to say, one of the most highly anticipated multiplayer, first-person shooters ever made. It’s the follow up to Britsoft developer Splash Damage's Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory
and is set in the same bio-mech augmented cyberpunk future as Quake II
and Quake 4
After Quake III Arena
is the second multiplayer-only game in the Quake
series, building on the gameplay of Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory
but featuring loads more vehicles, bigger maps and lots more. It is also, unlike Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory
, a full-priced commercial release as opposed to a free download.
Enemy Territory: Quake Wars
is set to be released later this year on PC (“It will ship when its ready” I was informed) and following that, versions are also being developed for the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. I caught up with Splash Damage’s owner and creative director, Paul Wedgwood, recently for a chat about his latest baby. Read on, for part one of our wide-ranging interview with Paul.
Hi Paul, so you’re showing off new levels today?
The Refinery level you played earlier, well that’s the first time we’ve shown that to UK press today. We showed the Valley level – which you also played earlier today - to the press at E3 last year and then we showed it at QuakeCon and at the Games Convention in Leipzig later that year.
How important are the hardcore community guys to help you see where you’re at with the game?
Yeah, the community guys are really important for us – along with the press, obviously – but we have eight of them visiting us today, all of whom run various Quake Wars
fan sites from all across Europe. It’s not often they have actually been together in person, for most of them it’s the first time they’ve met each other today. But I think once the game is out there’ll be more LAN parties, tournaments and events – and they’ll probably see much more of each other then.
Can you give us a potted history of Splash Damage? How did you get from being modders to being triple-A game developers?
Well, as for me personally, I started out with an interest in id Software
games in the early 1990s, running a bulletin board system in London called Cybernet BBS and I used to get hold of the Doom
shareware files and distribute them, non-commercially, to friends and stuff. I loved playing those early id titles.
When Quake 1
came out, I was working as a server and network analyst. So I knew quite a bit about the internet back in those early days around 1997 and I started playing Quake
online, joining a clan called Clan Earth-Quakers who were the oldest Quake
clan in the world. A good bunch of guys. And I became completely obsessed.
I played Quake 1 Team Fortress
for two… two and a half years constantly entering tournaments and leagues. And we won a lot of them and we did really well. I became the clan leader within a few months and I was writing for the UK Fortress Newsdesk website and I had a column on Barry’s World website for Team Fortress