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Halo Co-Creator Talks About His New Real-Time Tactical Game, Disintegration

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According to the President of V1 Interactive, the studio's upcoming real-time tactical first-person shooter, Disintegration, draws inspiration from Myth: The Fallen Lords, and one of the hardest things about making new properties stand out is delivering a high level of polish. In this month's IGN Unfiltered, Ryan McCaffrey sat down with Halo co-creator and ex-Bungie exec Marcus Lehto to discuss his new real-time tactical game, Disintegration, his advice for up-and-coming game designers, the origins of Master Chief, and much more. [ignvideo url="https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/01/06/disintegration-hands-on-preview-ign-first"] When comparisons were drawn to Full Spectrum Warrior and Brothers In Arms, Lehto said Disintegration was inspired by his own love for Bungie's real-time tactics game; Myth: The Fallen Lords. "Not that I wanted to stay too close to my roots with Bungie, but Myth: The Fallen Lords was one of those games that I think I most connected with... especially as I had a hand in helping build it, initially, and then it became a game that I stayed connected with. After we moved from Cleveland into the Chicago zone, I could stay connected with my friends. We played it all the time, online, together." "The most visceral aspect of the game that I think I was really interested in connecting with, was that real-time tactical element and how that played out on the battlefield in a way that was really tactile and very visceral and very exciting to watch play out." [widget path="global/article/imagegallery" parameters="albumSlug=53-disintegration-in-game-screenshots-pvp&captions=true"] "So that was the kind of thing that... when I first started exploring what we wanted to do with our first game here at V1, that this hearkening back to Myth: The Fallen Lords and building something that was almost a spiritual successor to that, was the initial underpinning of what we started with an actual playable prototype. It was sci-fi, it was based in the universe of Disintegration, but it was something that was a very different beast at that time." "It's so weird how it paralleled Halo, going from [real-time strategy] to first-person shooter... It wasn't intentional, by any means, but it was... this natural progression of how we explored the idea, initially, and then led to something we felt was much, much more exciting... From there, things just exploded, to the point where we got so excited about what we were building, because we understood that there wasn't really anything else like it out there." [ignvideo url="https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/01/08/disintegration-32-minutes-of-story-mission-gameplay-ign-first"] In recent years, in large part due to the massive number of games released, it has been increasingly difficult to gain visibility with new intellectual properties, unless they are given a massive marketing push by major publishers (Destiny, etc.). Lehto went on to elaborate on how he, and the rest of the team at V1, approach this challenge. "Part of it is, we rely on the fact that we have a legacy in building games [Halo, etc.] that allows us to, at least, talk to the people that we feel like we want to talk to... to discuss what this game is about. That's, of course, one part of it that we have to acknowledge." "The other big part of it... I really try to focus on as much as I possibly can, is making sure that we built something that is as polished as possible. There are so many great game ideas out there that just aren't executed to the point where they get into that quality level that is actually something that can be showcased." [ignvideo url="https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/01/23/disintegration-16-minutes-of-retrieval-multiplayer-gameplay-ign-first"] "It's also a huge challenge for us, as a brand new indie studio, with only 30 people in it, and we have this one opportunity to make a mark, one way or the other." For more on the best, brightest, most interesting minds in the games industry, be sure to check out every episode of Unfiltered, which includes interviews with 343's Bonnie Ross, Valve's Robin Walker and Chris Remo, Respawn's Stig Asmussen, and many, many more.
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Brian Barnett writes features, wiki guides, & more for IGN. Check out his Final Fantasy VII Remake walkthrough, and get your fix of Brian's antics on Twitter and Instagram (@Ribnax).

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