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Skip Navigation LinksPlayHard > In English > Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage. Interview with Onur Samli, Zoetrope Interactive

Название: Darkness Within 2: The Dark Lineage
Разработчик: Zoetrope Interactive
Издатель: Iceberg Interactive
Официальный сайт игры: перейти
Системные требования:
P4-1.8, 512 MB RAM, 256 MB 3D Card
Core 2 Duo-2.0, 1 GB RAM, 256 MB 3D Card
Жанр: Adventure
Игра вышла: 28.05.2010
Рейтинг: 7.0

Darkness Within: In Pursuit of Loath Nolder proved us once again that it is possible to make an original and exciting adventure game with immersive atmosphere not depending on a big budget and a huge size of the developers' team. In the end, sometimes the creative talent is all that matters. The heavily modified CPAGE graphics engine looks even better in the second and the last game entitled The Dark Lineage in the Darkness Within series.

The Dark Lineage will bring to life the past and the memories of the main character, including a depressive town called Arkhamend, a victorian mansion that hides a lot of horrible secrets, a dilapidated building inside a notorious, snow-clad woods and dim underground buildings and tunnels. For those of you, who are worrying about the fate of the detective Howard E. Loreid, we decided to learn more about the sequel and talked to Onur Samli, its Lead Designer, Scriptwriter and Sound Engineer. Not only he answered all our questions about the game, but Onur also shared 4 exlusive screenshots taken from The Dark Lineage with us and provided the pictures with his own extensive descriptions (just move your mouse cursor over any image below to see the text).

- Hello, Onur! What important events of Zoetrope Interactive can you name for the last 2 years?

- Actually there were none that could be speak of. [smiles]. Since we are a small team of 3 people working at home, our days pass very similar to each other.
- Has a global economic crisis affected your business anyhow?
- Unfortunatelly, yes. Lighthouse Interactive bankrupted, and we lost our distrubition channels for Darkness Within: In Pursuit of Loath Nolder back then. We signed a new deal with Iceberg Interactive but we're still looking for new opportunities for Spain and Turkey.
- What is your recipe for surviving the hard times?
- Being independent is the best advantage that a developer may have. So this has to be used wisely. You should plan your projects and wait for the best time to come out. We are more invulnerable to time constraints. 
- Were you happy with the reaction coming for the first game?
- We are really happy for having some dedicated fans around the world, but, of course, there are gamers who didn't like it. We are still getting a lot of encouraging mails from people who enjoyed playing Darkness Within: In Pursuit of Loath Nolder. For the most criticized feature of the game, I would name the node-based navigation system and the new thinking interface with clue puzzle-solving mechanism, which some players found odd.
- Why did you move the release date of The Dark Lineage from 2009 to Q1 of 2010? Was it easy to establish the new partnership with Iceberg Interactive?

- The bankruptcy of Lighthouse Interactive had nothing to do with moving the release date. Unfortunatelly, we had some unwanted internal issues, which got us slower since we are people working at home. Thus, we decided that it would be better for us to delay the release date and come out on a more suitable time. And for Iceberg: yes, since we know them, we easily decided to work with them again. 

- What positive changes have more months available for development brought in for the game?
- We had time to polish it. We used a lot more shock moments and cutscenes than in Darkness Within: In Pursuit of Loath Nolder. Also the game will have a longer gameplay time and include more characters.

- What inspired you to create the story of The Dark Lineage?
- Actually the story of Darkness Within 2 is the continuation of Darkness Within 1. So I can say that it uses the same inspirations with the first game. We mostly inspired from the short story (one of my personal favorites), The Case of Charles Dexter Ward. Also in The Dark Lineage, I can say that gamers will find more "Lovecraftian" stuff.
- What’s the start point for the new adventure?
- In The Dark Lineage, Howard will find the dark truths about himself and his lineage. In the first game, Howard didn't know anything. He was really confused, he used to panic and lose control easily. But in the sequel, after all the things he experienced, he is now cooler and reckless. He still afraids of some situations he faces, this is only natural, but he now knows and aware of some dark things which are directly connected to him.
- Why did you decide to name the main hero as Howard E. Loreid?
- We wanted to make it sound similar to Howard P. Lovecraft. [smiles]
- While learning more about his past will Howard have to encounter his present and his future?

- Of course! Players will interact and get help with a variety of characters like an innkeeper who tells Howard a lot about the town where the game takes place; a pre-owned book store owner named Henry who helps him. Though the most important character I think is an old and disturbing man named Jacob Armitage. His mood sways from normality to madness and he tells Howard about his dark past. 
- How do you see the importance of video clips for supporting the storytelling?
- I think, they are really important in the storytelling, because sometimes you have to take the control from players and make them see the things as you intended to be seen. We used this in the first game often and players will find even more in the sequel.
- Have you included any new features into the gameplay?
- No, The Dark Lineage will use the same features and interfaces as the first game. We just polished these things and made them more useful in accordance with player's feedback.
- And what about puzzles?
- This also hasn't been changed. Again, we used a wide range of puzzles in The Dark Lineage from some inventory based to mechanical ones.
- The advanced CPAGE engine looks very promising.
- Basically, it is built onto our in-house game engine but many new improvements are needed to be implemented for real-time 3D features. Those improvements have taken a lot of time of Galip, our programmer. With the new engine, The Dark Lineage will introduce more freedom and realism to the gamers. For example, the sequel uses real-time lighting that will make the game more scary and physics support to make it more realistic and dynamic
- How do you work with the in-game sound?
- Basically, at first we imagine the place we're preparing the sound effects for including its condition, purpose and the materials it was produced from. Only after that we get a clear idea of the place and then we start to prepare everything. Sometimes we had to use the same sample to produce a variety of different sound effects. It was hard, but I think this is something that has to be done perfectly, because this is the most important thing that gives life to the graphics. But, unfortunatelly, I see that some adventure games lack this important element almost completely.
- What can we expect from the soundtrack of The Dark Lineage?
- We prepare new dark ambient tracks for The Dark Lineage. I can say they will be similar to the soundtrack of the first game: dark and deppressing. We digitally produce and record all of our music tracks. All of the instruments we use are virtual instruments. Also, sometimes we manipulate some samples to prepare our own audio tones.
- Have you ever considered the possibility of providing your own voices to the game's characters?
- Yes, but for us, it is more appropriate to leave it to the professional voice actors.
- How many hours will an average gamer need to finish The Dark Lineage?
- First game could take about 10-15 hours, since The Dark Lineage is longer, I can say it will be between 20-25 hours.
- Initially, Darkness Within was planned as a trilogy. When and why did you decide to cancel the third part?
- We decided to cancel the third part in the middle of the development process of the The Dark Lineage. Because it would be better for us and gamers to finish the series with this second game. There are many examples that making a franchise causes the series to loose its appeal and quality with each sequel. We didn't want the same thing happen to the Darkness Within line-up. 
- Do you already have any plans for the future?
- We don't have any plans right now for future Darkness Within games. Yes, we love both producing and playing adventure games, so I think we will continue to make high-quality adventure games. [smiles].
- Can you advise some new worth watching anime stories to our readers?
- Actually, you can take everything from the Studio Ghibli. Aso I strongly recommend "Byôsoku 5 Senchimêtoru" (5 Centimeters per Second) and "Sennen joyû" (Millennium Actress). These anime films are definitelly great and worth watching.
- What's the best video game of this year?
- I don't really have enough time to play games lately so I can not give my personal opinion in this regard.
- Have you ever been to Russia? 

- No, but I want to visit your country.

- Name 3 things you associate with our country. 

- Matryoshka, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Feodor Dostoevskiy.
- If there is anything else, you’d like to add, please, do it here.
- We have a lot of Russian fans and really want to thank all of them for their support and encouragement. Please, stand by for The Dark Lineage

- Thank you, Onur!

27.11.2009 00:13, Unicorn


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Новости: 24.07.2008 Анонс: Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage
Обзоры: Darkness Within 2: The Dark Lineage
Интервью: Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage. Интервью с Онуром Самли, Zoetrope Interactive
Ролики: Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage [trailer, 1:44, wmv, 800x600]
Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage [trailer, 1:14, wmv, 640x480]
Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage [trailer, 1:08, avi, 800x600]
Демо-версии: Darkness Within: The Dark Lineage
Патчи: Darkness Within 2: The Dark Lineage [v1.02g]
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