We're all terribly excited about Far Cry 2 and its open-world approach, and its malaria, and its African setting, and its guns, and its graphics, and its burning villages, and its this and its that. But we want to know more.
So it was rather lucky that producer Louis-Pierre Pharand agreed to answer your questions about the game LIVE on Eurogamer, then. Here's what he had to say.
Our live coverage of this event has finished.
A% Moderating Hero: Louis-Pierre is online and we're off! First thing, Louis-Pierre, can you give everyone a quick summary of who you are and what you do on Far Cry 2?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: I'm the producer of Far Cry 2. Before joining Ubisoft, I was at EA working on the James Bond series and Medal of Honor series.
My job is mainly making sure we ship a kick ass game on time that respects our original goals.
I managed a big team of 175+: engineers, artists, designers, etc... Basically, it's like being a coach and general manager of a sports team!
But I don't put the ball in the net - my guys do it!
Q%eggyching%177207% Everyone is "Crying" out for a decent first person shooter (sorry about the pun) to compete and beat the Call of Duty experience, especially when it comes to online gaming.
What multiplayer features are going to make people buy this game more than any other FPS out there?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Call of Duty is a great game, I love it. Far Cry is a completely different shooter experience. You're not stuck in a corridor or in a confined space. We take full of advantage of the open feeling of Africa.
On the MP side in more details, we take all the SP features and integrate them in MP. Propagation of fire, destructibility, dynamism of vegetation, dynamic lighting systems, day-night cycles.
We also made sure to have the ability to use the vehicles (land and water). Plus all the tools and ingredients are there to allow gamers to be extremely creative in their approaches.
I missed the Map Editor. That just a crazy mad tool for everyone to create their own maps, to share them and to brag about how good they are!
A% Moderating Hero: What sort of multiplayer modes will there be?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Four modes: Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Diamond (like Capture the Flag), and Uprising, a modified version of a VIP.
Q%Shinomo%147965% Fifty square kilometers of open terrain to play about with is really quite expansive, even by normal sandbox standards. Will enemy AI play a role in making this more interesting? For example, can players expect to see frequent enemy patrols of the game world to keep things interesting? Would this be one of the AI's behaviours?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Definitely; Patrols, checkpoints, multiple locations and exploration rewards. The world is not empty at all, but full of action. When you get chased by sometimes one, two, three, or even four vehicles it's just insane.
Q%Daipac%71611% Is there going to be any levelling up involved in the MP experience, like there is in CoD4?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: We decided that all persistent stats will occur within a match or a defined series of matches. That way, gamers will have a taste of all our great guns quickly. You will upgrade within classes and it will allow you to be more tactical in your progression depending of the type of maps you play.
Q%darleysam%79857% How destructive can you be? With the likes of Mercenaries 2, Red Faction (and Battlefield: Bad Company to a lesser extent), people are getting a taste for blowing holes in things. What kind of scope are we going to get in this?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Pretty much everything that looks destructible will be destructible. Ranging from tree branches to buildings. Fire plays a major part in the game and is a key element of Far Cry 2. The fire will propagate to anything that should catch fire. However, big structures will not be destructible.
Q%tjlazr%30370% Judging by the vast number of FPS games out there (and I've played most of them) we are as gamers obsessed with being an all action hero, invariably a white guy with enormous arms and special forces training. What separates your protagonist from the legions of other gun wielding killing machines that have gone before? Is there a story investment at all or is it really just about getting the "30 seconds of fun" element right sufficiently to keep people playing?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: We have a deep and immersive story that will take you through the action. You have the freedom of your progression, and consequences to your actions. It's not just shoot, shoot, shoot. Playing Far Cry 2 is an experience, not duck hunt. But do expect loads of action.
Q%thegogsunit%175326% The map editor looks cracking. How complicated is it and will there be user guides for it. Will it be possible to use the maps for multiplayer?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Yes the purpose of the map editor is to create MP maps. plus we made it extremely intuitive and accessible, so anyone can pick it up. Our goal was to make a tool so people can truly be creative and not be blocked by complicated tech.
We made one specifically for PC and one for the consoles. It's so different making maps with a mouse & keyboard than it is with a controller.
Q%Von_Adder%177205% Can you give us normal human beings a semi honest answer about the differences between the console and PC versions, should i really go out and upgrade my PC to enjoy this game at its best or will it still be just as much fun on a console?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: First: our PC version is totally badass, and so are the consoles. We have put so much effort in making the games outstanding on all platforms (meaning great visual quality and great frame rate). But it's up to the investment you want to put in, and to the fact that are you a PC shooter fan or console shooter fan? The bottom line is that they are both of extreme quality.
I'm not too shy to say that no one else can deliver what will in a few weeks on PC and consoles: 50 square kilometers of open world, no loading, and sick graphics.
Q%RebellionLies%167356% With the multiplayer, is there any kind of social networking features planned - especially with regard to user-created maps?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: All fan-generated content will have the ability to be rated by the community, and the cream will rise to the top. We will support that community and reward the best map makers.
Q%darleysam%79857% Is it possible to run over small animals in this game? It needs to be realistic so you can run over a lion and break its legs off.
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: OK... It's possible to run over the animals but there is no dismemberment.
A% Moderating Hero: Picking up on one of your last points: how will you reward the community map makers?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: We'll we want to make sure that the best map makers will get known and respected by their peers. Plus, we will want to meet those great map makers!
Q%dandliver%83998% Hello, will Far Cry 2 have Trophies?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Yes and Achievements, of course.
Q%nswan%65636% Any chance of a demo before release?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: No demos will be available. It became too complex to do a demo of an openworld game. We decided to put those efforts in the game, so that everyone can enjoy a better and more polished experience.
Q%bodypopper%23014% Will there be bots to add for the user-made maps?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Nope, the maps can only be used in MP modes.
Q%ztzt%122351% Will there be any DLC for Far Cry 2 and if so what kind of content are you planning/thinking about making.
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: I can't say at this point. It's a secret!
A% Moderating Hero: What kind of vehicles are there in multiplayer? And could you tell us a bit more about that Uprising mode?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Jeeps, 4X4, big trucks, sedans, river and fishing boats, the glider, and more.
Uprising is mode where one player plays the VIP and the others need to protect him while capturing points. That's the short version. The long one, well, you'll have to play it!
A% Moderating Hero: Sorry, another one from me, but lots of people are asking: are you worried at all about the political situation in Africa and setting of Far Cry 2? Particularly the links to the diamond trade.
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: NO. I believe it's about time developers didn't shy away from serious issues. Movies do it, why not games? We put extra effort in making a compelling experience with a deep and immersive story.
Q%some1%20723% Roughly how long will the average person take to complete the game?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: If a gamer goes through the story path only using the fastest way, then about 20-30 hours.
Most players will take about 40-80 hours depending about the investment in side missions and exploration.
Game exhaustion is over 100 hours. That's not taking into account that it's impossible to play the game the same way twice, so replayability is huge!
A% Moderating Hero: Finally, Louis-Pierre, we ask all our interviewees this: what would you rather have, lasers for eyes, or be able to turn invisible? And why?
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: That's a tough one. I would have lasers for eyes, although it would be very difficult to walk around Montreal in the summer time!
A% Moderating Hero: That's about it from us, Louis-Pierre. Thank you ever so much for answering our questions!
A% Louis-Pierre Pharand: Thanks to Eurogamer for putting this together [oh no really, it's nothing - Ed] and mostly to the Far Cry 2 fans.
The game is almost done and it's just freaking awesome! I hope all our fans will enjoy it. Thanks!