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Reinventing the Soldiers Tale

01 Oct 10

RE The Medal of Honor series has historically focused on the combat of World War II. Why the switch to modern-day combat inAfghanistan?

RF While we were planning for the next iteration of Medal of Honor, we had the rare opportunity to speak with some Tier 1 operators. It was then that we decided that we wanted to tell a story about this different breedof warrior. Given the fact that these troopsoperate primarily in Central Asia in the current fi ght, the selection of time frame and localewasnatural.

RE The game will feature the narratives of characters from both ‘Big Military’ soldiers as well as ‘Tier 1’ operators. Is this intended to give the player a taste of the range of different perspectives of the way that the confl ict is fought and the scales that it is fought on?

RF Absolutely! We wanted to give players a perspective of all the parties from a command centre to the soldiers serving downrange. Along with highlighting what makes each unit unique we portray that, although they may be individual units, they all need each other to accomplish the mission. This is especially true when things don’t go according to the plan.

RE EA has worked with several US military consultants to work on the game to improve its realism. What was their input and how similar can gamers expect their experiences to be to real-life events?

 RF We had the privilege of working with several branches of the military from Apache pilots to Tier 1 operators. All through development we have viewed the process as a partnership with give and take on both sides. We went to great lengths to represent the efforts of those who are serving or have served in our military with due respect and the appropriate level of sensitivity. To that end, we chose not to duplicate any one true story or name actual soldiers or events. We used the guidance from our advisors as well as a host of books on the subject as inspirations for a fi ctional story that is set in the current fi ght in Central Asia. What gamers can expect is an authentic depiction of what soldiers encounter while serving downrange in thattheater.

RE The Medal of Honor series seems to have fallen behind other war-based titles such as Call of Duty and Battlefi eld: Bad Company in terms of popularity. Is the series reboot an attempt to gain back the genre dominance that Medal of Honor once enjoyed in the early 2000s?

RF We don’t look at it as "Keeping up with the Joneses”. Medal of Honor as an IP has a lot of maturity and can certainly stand on its own merit. That said, there is a great team of passionate and talented developers working very hard to make a high-quality game that will reward both hardcore Medal of Honor fans and new playersalike.

RE Medal of Honor has copped fl ak recently because some think that the setting and the involvement of the Taliban is a little too close to home. How do you respond to such criticism?

RF This subject has been broached in other media and even other games. As artists, we feel we should have the same opportunity to express this subject in our medium. We don’t take the subject matter lightly and always make every effort to be respectful in our depictions. For us it has never been a political statement or platform. We do what we always have done in MedalofHonor: tell the soldier’s story from the viewpoint of a soldier.

RE The same team behind Battlefi eld: Bad Company 2’s multiplayer is behind the multiplayer for Medal of Honor and there are some defi nite similarities. In what ways does it constitute a different experience?

RF The main difference is how the matches are paced. By creating smaller maps with faster pacing we have merged the traditional military shooter experience with the "always keep moving” mentality of "old school” multiplayer games. Include with that the ability to customise your weapons, and you have the makings of a very entertaining multiplayer experience.

RE How do you hope to entice people fromModern Warfare and the upcomingBlackOps?

RF We already have a great base of fans from Medal of Honor and Battlefi eld: Bad Company 2 that are waiting to get in and to play our game when it ships in October; if fans of other games want to come over and play, we think they will have a good time. The more themerrier.

RE The multiplayer component seems to be getting most of the attention so far. What can you tell us about the game’s main campaign?

RF The main campaign follows a group of soldiers from both Tier 1 and "big army” units as they engage the enemy in a large-scale operation. The player will play as two different Tier 1 operators, an Army ranger and an Apache gunner as their story unfolds in the mountains of Afghanistan. We portray that even though our forces may employ awesome technology, it always comes down to the quality and bravery of the troops working together on the ground.

RE Do you have any little-known or (preferably) unknown info about Medal of Honor that you can impart to our readers?

RF Behind Greg Goodrich’s enormous beard there is a portal to another dimension.

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