Review Fix chats with “Infinium Strike” Creative Director Dexter Chow, who discusses the creation process for the game and its goals moving forward. Already available on Windows, Mac and Linux, it’ll will arrive on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One later in 2016.
About The Game:
In Infinium Strike, players take on the role of chief weapons officer aboard a deep space battlecarrier serving as humanity’s last line of defense. Players must utilize an arsenal of weapons, fleets of ships, and cutting-edge technology to save Earth from a relentless alien race known as the Wrog.
Review Fix: What games inspired Infinium Strike?
Dexter Chow: Defense Grid, Missile Command, and Star Wars: Empire at War. Although the core game centers around arming your ship with turrets or towers, like tower defense games, the other weapon systems and the four directions give the gameplay an arcade twist.
Review Fix: What has development been like?
Chow: We have a mix of veterans and new game developers, so in some ways, it has gone as expected. We knew we wanted to establish a strong 3-D artistic look, and we want our game to bust genres; in other words, we didn’t want to make a clone. Both these challenges were huge for a new company — or any company in my opinion. We have experienced leads who have hit high standards in development in the past, so once we achieved our art standards and gameplay standards, it felt good to fill out content and make iterative changes based on feedback from testers and team members.
On a more challenging note, being an indie, it is hard for many of us to focus on one discipline because we also promote our product with videos, shows, web and social media. The biggest challenge and, some may consider failure, is that combining all these other goals has, at times, really slowed us down. For example, I spent more than 50% of my time working on marketing projects and not finishing the game. This resulted in the game balance and debugging process taking longer than we would have liked. I am not sure indies can avoid working on getting exposure though, so we are in the process of better preparing for our future titles by trying to focus more exclusively on development and having dedicated resources to work on marketing projects.
Review Fix: How would you describe this game since it blends a few genres?
Chow: We have gone through many phrases to describe the game. The most accurate is a bit long.
It’s an arcade-style starship tower defense game in which you are the weapons officer controlling all of the defenses on a massive warship. This game combines popular tower defense game mechanics, puts them in a full 3-D environment, and combines them with a large fleet and powerful advanced technologies to give the player a unique strategy/action gameplay experience.
Review Fix: With all the competition on the mobile market, in indies, and on consoles now, how difficult was it for you to try and make something that stood out?
Chow: We spent a lot of time thinking about what the core mechanics are and how to give the player a familiar feeling with strategic tower defense games, while not losing sight of the fact that defending a ship takes quick action and ever-changing tactics. In the end, we decided to keep the features that support the overall goal of efficiently killing as many Wrogs as possible with a starship, so every turret, ship, and super technology was evaluated and kept in the game if it supported the fun, tactical goals of the game rules.
Because we initially chose a unique game premise (arcade style-tower defense in 3-D on a starship), keeping it original was not hard because the idea was original. However, pulling it all together and having it be fun and relevant was, of course, a huge challenge.
Review Fix: Bottom line, why must someone play this game?
Chow: If you like strategy games or tower defense games, Infinium Strike is an original strategy/action game that gives you hours and hours of space tactics to rid the universe of invading aliens.
Review Fix: How do you want this game to be remembered? Chow: I would like half the people to call it a unique strategy game and the other half call the game a unique action game. Most importantly, I would like people to consider Infinium Strike a unique game that presents fun, familiar gameplay in a believable, futuristic universe.
What are your goals for this game?
Chow: The primary goals:
• Develop escalating campaign missions for all skill levels that reward the player as they get better at tactical gameplay. We developed 4 levels of difficulty and a competitive deep space mode for experts.
• Break the standard flat map tower defense convention by creating a full 3D environment without breaking the tactical importance of choosing and upgrading towers at the right time and in the right places. We highlight this feature by allowing a user-defined camera mode to watch the action from anywhere in real time.
• Create a game that is equally fun on console as well as PC. In our testing, there was about an equal amount of people who prefer keyboard/mouse versus controllers. With the action components, some prefer the many quick keys on a keyboard, while others prefer the input of a familiar controller.
Review Fix: What’s next?
Chow: We are in full production of Battlecursed, a rogue-like dungeon crawler. Again, we seek to have an original design by combining aspects of rogue games, dungeon crawlers, and action RPGs, all in one game. Wish us luck! Review Fix: Anything else you want to add? Chow: Thanks for the opportunity to explain why we think our game is unique compared to the many games out there. Being gamers ourselves, we appreciate the opportunity to be indie and create different games that don’t fit a mold established over years of creating the same game with different graphics — which is the point. Having opportunities to explain this to others really helps us get the word out about Codex Worlds.