On the eve of some of the biggest releases of the year, I had the opportunity to sit down with Studio Design Director David Vonderhaar (from Treyarch) to chat about 2015's entry in the yearly iterating franchise. What started out as an interview about potential story details, shifted into co-op level design challenges and finished with the all-important topic of time to kill.
Here's a tease of what we talked about:
AusGamers: Yeah, and I found that that was an incredibly powerful thing. Has that had to make you rethink how you approach time to kill and speed, and I guess escapability, as well?
Click that LMB here to read the full interview
David Vonderhaar: What we do is we refer to that as spiking the power band. So the specials ability, your weapon comes up, you have this brief moment of time to feel like a complete stud. You can also miss. You can also be shot and lose half your power. It’s actually risky.
AusGamers: So you can be shot while you’re activating?
David Vonderhaar: Yeah.
David Vonderhaar: So if you didn’t get shot, consider yourself lucky. Because if you’re grav spiking and you get shot, then your meter drains to half and you have to refill it halfway. So it’s punishing if you miss with grav spikes. Time to kill is a very community-centric term, for me. I wish it was that simple. I wish I could sit down in the game engine and go, let me turn down the time to kill, there was one nob, and I turned it down. ‘Let me turn the time to kill nob down.’ So the game is fast and it’s deliberately fast, because it’s a very fluid game. How did the specialists impact time to kill? Not specifically. Okay. The time to kill, or how fast you can die, is really a factor of gun damage and health, bottom line. Health has been constant in Call of Duty since Call of Duty started. Everyone’s like, ‘Oh, this game has more health than the last game.’ Not true. Always 100 health. It’s the guns that are variable, and not even that variable.