Destiny Interview with Interactive Magic's Lynne Beaman
by Al Giovetti
Read the Review, Destiny Review by Al Giovetti
Al Giovetti (AG): Hi Lynne, its nice to see you again and welcome to our show
Lynne Beaman (LB): Nice to see you again, also Al.
AG: Lynne we are really looking forward to finding out more about Interactive Magic's new game Destiny. Can you tell the audience something about the history of this title?
LB: Destiny was born as a result of a meeting between Bill Stealey and Adrian Earle in April 1994. Adrian Earle is the Development Director of a British based company, Dagger Interactive Technologies Ltd. Bill Stealey you know. Bill was looking for a Development group to produce a game with a similar initial concept to Civilization (ie the growth of mankind) but not to be a straight clone.
Destiny meets these requirements : By introducing Real Time as well as a Turn Based Mode. By making it truly multi-player via network and modem. By using a 3D world. By concentrating more on the making of Discoveries and the management of Resources and less on the Military option.
Dagger was formed in 1993 by Adrian Earle and Steven Green who had worked together on Microprose's Fields of Glory. Their first project as an independent company was The Civil War for Empire Interactive. Destiny is their second project and was done as a joint venture between Dagger and IMagic.
AG: Can you tell us a little something about the story line or Plot?
LB: The story line is the Development of Mankind from the Stone Age to the Space Age. The player has to control their tribe's development and interaction both with a changing world and with any other tribes they meet.
The development team wanted to achieve several things but perhaps the two main ones were : Produce a game that that could be played at a simple level so that a new player would not be put off by the games complexity, but that had sufficient depth that the experienced player could play it over and over again and still find new things to do, new problems to solve, and new ways to solve them.
The game certainly has the depth aimed for and while it may still be a little daunting I believe there are enough easy play options to give a new player enough of a taste to keep them coming back to learn more and eventually win at the hardest level.
Produce a game that although inevitably compared to Civilization would be recognized in it's own right as a good game, different enough that people will want to play both.
Judging by comments from many people this has definitely been achieved.
AG: Yes I agree, most people would want to compare this game with Civilization considering that Sid Meier and Wild Bill Stealey were partners for so long. What is the game play like?
LB: The game is Windows 95 and uses a combination of menus, mouse clicks, icons and key presses. Often a single command can be accessed by several of these methods which allows the player to interface with the game in the way they prefer.
There are no characters as such, the player is the character, he is in ultimate control of the actions of his tribe.
AG: Destiny appears to get a strategy God Game. What do the interface screens look like and do.
LB: Screenshots are available at www.imagicgames.com/mediaroom/. Take a look at them there and get some idea for yourself
AG: The documentation mentions three dimensional polygon graphics. Can you please tell me more about the graphics?
LB: Whats to tell? They are three dimensional models composed of polygons with texture maps. There are about 500 of them, ranging from men with clubs to modern jet aircraft. Each model represents a Force and can be moved around the map, and given different orders to allow the player to conduct the various game functions necessary to win the game.
AG: How was the animation done?
LB: Animation was done using 3D Studio and built into AVI files. It is used in the Intro sequance and for reward segments when the player's tribe makes specific key discoveries.
AG: Compare Destiny to Civilization and PowerMonger, or other similar products and who by and why yours is better, different, etc.?
LB: You will have to look at Destiny yourself to see how they compare, we won't compare ourselves to anyone else.
AG: Are there any puzzles or activities?
AG: What are the graphics like and how were they done?
LB: The resolution is dependent on the users machine setting as the game is Windows 95. But the graphics ares designed for 640x480 and 256 colours. We used 3D Studio to produce fully three dimensional, rendered and light sourced graphics without shading or shadows.
AG: Is there any full motion video or animation in the game?
LB: No full motion video.
AG: Please tell us something about the music score.
LB: The music is an original composition by Donald Griffin. It is 25 minutes of full audio quality capable of being played through a standard CD player as well as a computer (Don't Play Track One though thats the game). The music is designed to play the same role as a movie sound track and presents various aspects of musical development built around some common musical themes.
AG: What can you tell us about the sound effects?
LB: Sound effects were taken from CD SOund Effect Libraries.
AG: What are the multi player features of the game?
LB: Currently there is no direct serial link because Direct Draw does not support it. It is planned that this will be introduced as soon as Direct Draw makes it avaialble.
Other than that you can play any scenario or full game over the network or modem link exactly as though you were playing a local game against only AI opponents. You can even mix Real People with AI.
The game does not have modes as such but inherently involves periods where co-operation is needed, times when conflict is required and times where you may be helping some people and hindering others.
The only restrictions I know of about network connections are what is available via Windows 95.
AG: Well thanks for sharing with us on the computer show. And we hope to have you back soon.
LB: Thanks for having me. I hope we answered your questions on Destiny. If you need any more help, let me know.
AG: Well, that's just about it for this segment of the Computer Show, in just a moment . . .