IGM Interviews: The Fusty Game Team (Hover: Revolt of Gamers)
Hover: Revolt of Gamers is one of this year’s smash successes on Kickstarter. The “open world futuristic freerun / parkour game inspired by great games like Jet Set Radio and Mirror’s Edge” managed to haul in an impressive pledge total of nearly $120k, more than triple the initial funding goal. Lucky for gamers, those funds are going toward some high quality stretch goals, including expanding the city’s scope, developing additional playable characters, and most notably, a soundtrack composed by the legendary Jet Set Radio composer, Hideki Naganuma.
I got the chance to chat with the Fusty Game development team, consisting of Charles Vesic (art director and level designer), Marine Baron (character designer and 3D animator), and Pierre Raffali (technical director, gameplay designer, and programmer), about their plans for Hover going forward after such a successful Kickstarter launch. Word of advice: you might want to put on a helmet and knee pads. (Bear in mind: The Fusty Game team is French, and while this interview has been translated, there may be some slight errors in their responses. But I don’t think anything gets lost in translation.)
Indie Game Magazine: The Kickstarter describes Hover as being “particularly adapted to the Oculus Rift.” Can you explain how Hover is being developed with the Oculus in mind? Do you think the game’s fast-paced nature will be a particular issue for those who are nervous about getting motion sickness?
Fusty Game: The Oculus Rift is a an amazing new technology which offers a whole new level of immersion in video games. One of our objectives is to create fresh and intense sensations, so using the Oculus Rift was an obvious decision! For now, few games have been presented with the Oculus, and it’s true that for some people the experience was unpleasant. We’re spending lots of time on setting up the Oculus correctly, to offer you a pleasurable immersion without motion-sickness. Everything is about precision and development time.
Jumping from a hundred meter’s high to bounce up without damage with the Oculus on your head is just… Wow !! We’re excited about sharing those sensations with you all.
IGM: What role will Clans play in the game? Will there be different story scenarios if players join different Clans?
FG: In the game’s story, there are 2 gamer clans, which are fighting the anti video-game tyranny. The clan that you’ll impersonate defends the positive values of video games, wishing to resist in a pacifist manner. The Breakers clan is much more violent and anarchistic, giving a bad image to Gamers (videos games make you violent…). You’ll have to fight the Mayor’s anti-leisure propaganda while preventing the Breakers from doing too much damage. You’ll also have to evade robotic police designed to track the Gamers down.
In multiplayer you’ll be able to play the 3 clans (Gamers, Breakers and Police), and in some missions they’ll each have their own objectives, as well as ways of achieving them.
IGM: With a game like this, it’s easy to get caught up in all the zany cartoon action and lose focus of the story. How important will the narrative be to the Hover experience, and what additional details can you tell us about the plot so far?
FG: The game is very free. As we explained in the game’s presentation on Kickstarter, we don’t like intrusive scenarios pausing the action every other minute. We want the player to feel immersed into the universe, and not a movie. This is why the missions won’t be mandatory, nor linear. While going around the city, you’ll meet people or Gamers who’ll ask for your help. It’s up to you to do the missions or not. Of course, each mission fills the story, each unlockable character possesses its own secrets to discover, and for the players wanting to get to the bottom of it, putting an end to the tyranny and dethroning the Mayor will be possible.
IGM: What sorts of skills will players be able to unlock in the game? Will they only enhance maneuverability, or will there be combat mechanics as well?
FG: You’ll be able to unlock numerous characters. Each character has its own skill grid. By participating to challenges, doing crazy combos etc… you’ll gain XP and points which will allow you to buy skills. Speed, jump bonuses etc… will be available, most of those skills will be linked to tricks allowing, for example, double jumps, acceleration auras, bouncing surface graffitis, and so on!
IGM: In your Kickstarter video you hint at a lot of different types of gameplay, from ‘classic’ Graffiti Spray to ‘stealth’ infiltration missions. What other types of gameplay modes do you have planned?
FG: With a gameplay based on “parkour,” it’s possible to create a whole lot of situations. There will be infiltration scenes, chases, exploration, extraction, and even detective missions where you’ll have to discover and unveil some secret stuff. The game is highly axed on the multiplayer as well, and you’ll have the freedom of face other gamers during lots of races or scoring battle-type challenges. You’ll also be able to create your own challenges.
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