Bohemia rules out consoles for Arma 3

"[But] for something that is next..."

Czech developer Bohemia does have PS4 and Xbox One dev kits, but Arma 3 won't be adapted for them.

"We've basically dismissed it for Arma 3," project leader Joris-Jan van t' Land told me.

"I personally really like consoles so I would love to see it on there, but for Arma 3, from the start it was developed as PC only, and it wouldn't do it justice - there wouldn't be an easy port to console. You'd really have to redesign stuff like how the controls work, and the interface, so for Arma 3 that's out of the scope. For something that is next, it is becoming much more likely to be multiplatform."

The team apparently tried to port Arma 2 to Xbox 360, but, van t' Land told me, "we couldn't get it right".

For the next two years, the 50-70 person Arma 3 team will focus on, simply, Arma 3.

"Arma 3 we are supporting at least for the next two years," declared van t' Land. "We have the plans in place for that. Whatever is next [ie Arma 4], I don't think a lot will happen this year in terms of pre-production. But 2015 will be the year when we need to start thinking about what's next. We don't have concrete plans at the moment.

"I think it will be something in the franchise [the next game], but we're not sure what. And the company is growing, as you've seen - many new offices - so there are more resources as well to handle multiple [things]."

Arma 3 has only just received its final piece of story content, having been launched as an early access game - a military sandbox - in the autumn last year. It's complete now, more or less, and the next update will be a mechanical one, adding an ambitious Zeus mode that furnishes the community with Dungeons & Dragons-style Dungeon Master tools.

Whether the new Arma 3 content veers towards story or mechanical gameplay changes depends on you, the community. But there's a mantra that underpins all upcomning Arma 3 content: "Infantry is key," van t' Land said.

"When in October 2012 we did a project review and really tried to nail down vision and what we want with Arma 3, we came up with something: We think Arma should be infantry-centric with combined-arms support."

In two-years time there should be a whole new Arma 3 terrain to play on - one that's "very different" to Altis or Stratis, Jay Crowe said. And there will probably be new vehicles, weapons, mission types and multiplayer modes.

"The more game you give people, the more game they give back to you"

An Arma 3 team mantra

"We're not talking about weapon packs and textures; we're talking about significant, game-changing mechanics," he said.

Some of it will be free and some of it will be paid for, and "generosity" is a buzzword that apparently comes down from the top.

"The more game you give people," boss Marek Spanel tells the team, "the more game they give back to you."

You'll still be able to play on servers with people who have the premium content even if you don't. "We didn't want to split the community," Crowe said. "We want everyone to play together whether they have this premium stuff or not, and that is a tricky design proposition to do, but we think we've come up with something."

On top of that there's Steam Workshop, and the team's working on enabling add-on and full mod support, so that the next DayZ can be found. In fact, Bohemia is sponsoring a mod competition for Arma 3 called Make Arma Not War that aims to find just that - the next DayZ.

Because DayZ changed everything for Bohemia. Arma 3 "has been quite successful" but there wasn't even a hint of a pause when I asked which of the company's games was most successful. "DayZ."

"The whole company has grown with DayZ," Crowe said, "and Arma 3 can only benefit from both that and the exposure Bohemia has as a company in the world. If you know Arma 3 through this, that's great - you know it now when you didn't know it before."

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