We sat down with Project Director Alexander Zezulin to talk about World of Warplanes, an MMO that will cement Wargaming.net as the leader in vehicular combat..
World of Tanks has only been around for less than a year in North America, but in that time span alone this tank-based MMO has pulled in some serious positivity from players and journalists around the world. Of course, Belarusian developer Wargaming.net isn't content to just sit back and release more tanks over the coming years; instead, they've decided to expand their World of [insert armored Vehicle] franchise by spreading their wings and taking to the air.
This year, Wargaming.net is looking to the skies for their next MMO with the announcement of World of Warplanes. But how does one do a plane-based MMO? We sat down with World of Warplanes' Project Director Alexander Zezulin to talk about this new MMO and how Wargaming.net planes to take the aviation-based MMO world by storm. Let's get to it!
ZAM: So, why warplanes? World of Tanks is already quite popular so a new game is understandable; what made planes the next step? Will we see World of Battleships next?
Alexander Zezulin: We've managed to gather a really strong team of tank enthusiasts who helped develop a brilliant tank-oriented free-to-play MMO. We've hit the mark with the setting, which was very unorthodox, compared to multiple WoW and LoL clones. We've managed to find great balance between simple controls and sophisticated gameplay, and players liked that combination. We discovered that most of our tank-loving players are also keen on warplanes, so deciding on the next game to develop was easy. All the key game design elements that led to World of Tanks' success will be brought to World of Warplanes.
Also, you're right about World of Battleships! We've already announced the project, and it will be built on the same concept as Tanks and Warplanes. We'll cover all the settings that held and witnessed epic tussles for supremacy. The only thing we lack so far is World of Infantry, but the ground is already taken by tanks, so no plans for this yet.
ZAM: How did the production team form for Warplanes? Did a lot of the people involved in the other Wargaming.net games work on this newest offering as well?
Alexander: To work on World of Warplanes, we teamed up with one of the leaders in the Ukrainian gaming industry, Persha Studia, with whom we had worked on World of Tanks content. Our collaboration was a success and when the next big project came along we couldn't think of a better partner to work with. As for the Minsk-based WoWP developers, they are headed by a colleague of mine and a real pro at game design, Anton Sitnikov, the World of Warplanes Producer. As the work on WoWP continued and the game approached the Closed Alpha phase, we involved more and more people in the development, both at our office in Minsk and all around the globe. For the game engine, for example, we selected BigWorld, who proved themselves with World of Tanks. The BigWorld team in Australia has been busy continuously improving World of Warplanes.
ZAM: The graphics from the shots I've seen seem a bit improved from Tanks; am I imagining it? Any information on what the minimum specs will be?
Alexander: Yes, the game appearance already looks better than in World of Tanks. As mentioned before, we devoted much time to graphics, and the improvements you see are from images of a game that is still in its closed alpha stage, so more visual enhancements are to come. However, it remains hard to say what technical specs will be like at the end. The actual optimization begins closer to the Open Beta testing. As for now, we are still discussing specs within our team. In other words, the decision will be based on the feedback we get from our testers.
ZAM: How does combat in the game work? If players are taken out in combat, do they wait out of the rest of the match? Are matches only ended when all the enemy planes plummet to the ground?
Alexander: Just like it is with Tanks, World of Warplanes will have an option of jumping into the next battle with your other vehicle, if you've been killed in the early stages of your current fight. As for elimination of all enemy machines as a requirement for a victory, let's put it this way - regardless of the game mode, it will be one of the possible additional means of gaining victory. The first mode World of Warplanes will feature reconstruct the main role of aviation during WWII, which was support for ground forces. Each team will have a ground base - a number of ground objects like fuel depots, tank columns or railway stations, which the opposing team will have to take out to secure victory. But this will be a tricky task, because bases will have impressive ground defenses, so you'll have to decide on optimal tactics to be victorious, and one of them is apparently killing all your enemies.
System Details Discussed on Page 2 >