Eurogamer: Enslaved is based around the relationship between Monkey and Trip. Will they be romantically involved?
Tameem Antoniades: I'm not going to say. Part of the fun is...
Eurogamer: Are they going to kiss?
Tameem Antoniades: I'm not going to say. You've got to play it to find out! That's part of the fun.
Eurogamer: When you have that rather obvious set-up, how do you keep people from assuming the inevitable will happen?
Tameem Antoniades: That's more of a story challenge. Alex is one of the smartest men I've ever met and he's definitely not about following the crowd. His stories are often quite dark and explore dark aspects of humanity and of self, so the story does take quite a dark turn as you play through it.
Eurogamer: What control will players have on the story?
Tameem Antoniades: No control whatsoever: it's completely linear. We've done that so we can shape those emotional moments, because we know where the story is going.
Eurogamer: There's an upgrade system in the game we've not heard much about. Can you shed some light?
Tameem Antoniades: Collecting orbs allows Trip to upgrade Monkey. You'll be able to upgrade combat and purchase new abilities like counter. There's a combat awareness ability that allows you to see what the enemies are doing, so they'll go red when they're attacking, blue when they're blocking. There are upgrades to the staff blast weapon. There's an RPG-like element to the game. And Trip collects equipment as well, like the dragonfly to scan areas. She can pack machinery too, which you can use in puzzles.
Eurogamer: New film IP is often met with excitement and success, but new game IP has to struggle against the Call of Duties, Halos and FIFAs. What's that like for you, particularly as you're looking to launch between them all in Q4?
Tameem Antoniades: Coming out when all these great games are coming out as a first instalment of a new IP is, err, tough. It's something we don't have any control over as developers, and all we can do is make the best game possible and keep our focus on that. There's nothing else we can do. The landscape's littered with great games that have not worked [commercially] - ICO, Stranger's Wrath - so I don't have any presuppositions that Enslaved will.
As for films working better as new IP - it's an interesting question. Movies get worse as the franchise goes on and games get better. I've never actually encountered that problem because we've never worked on a sequel. There's a counter to that actually, and that's TV series. They actually get better over time, like Dexter.
If there ever is a sequel for Enslaved, and I'm not supposing that there will be, then there's an opportunity to serialise it. The original book came with an enormous number of chapters, only half of which I think were ever translated into English, and they cover a seven-year journey. So there's lots of material to draw on.
Eurogamer: This year, Microsoft has Kinect and Sony has Move. What does Ninja Theory think about those?
Tameem Antoniades: I've never really thought about it, actually. The game we're doing doesn't have those systems in mind. I haven't actually tried them out, so I don't know how they work. At this point I don't see how we can apply it to our games.
Eurogamer: You've not looked at it because it holds no interest or because you're too busy?
Tameem Antoniades: I'm a healthy sceptic.
Tameem Antoniades is co-founder of Ninja Theory. Enslaved will be released on PS3 and Xbox 360 on 8th October.