Rob Hewson about Hydrophobia

Rob Hewson about Hydrophobia

Feature

Hooked Gamers talks to Dark Energy Digital's Rob Hewson on their water-thriller Hydrophobia.

Hooked Gamers: The initial weapon you receive in the first part of the game is a stun gun. Is it possible to go through the game in a pacifistic style? In other words, can you go through the entirety of Hydrophobia without killing an enemy?

Rob Hewson about Hydrophobia
Rob Hewson: It’s not so much a stun gun as a sonic weapon and it’s incredibly versatile. The key idea behind it is that it is used as an enabler for the real weapon in the game; the hazards and water in the environments. These Sonic Rounds can be used to stun an enemy, yes, but they also knock an enemy out of cover or into the air and into the path or fire or electricity, they can be used to blow up oil barrels and unleash the water to carry a floating oil fire into your enemy, or they can be used to trigger electric traps or drown an enemy. You can play through the entire game using just Sonic Rounds and use the environment as your weapon, and you unlock a Medal if you are able to do so.

Hooked Gamers: For such a great looking game with a physics engine built in the file size for the game is remarkably small. How was this achieved? For that matter, why focus on digital distribution and such a cheap price when this could easily be a disc title for a standard $60 price tag?

Rob Hewson: Our InfiniteWorlds game engine uses procedural technology which dramatically reduces the filesize. Dark Energy believes that digital distribution is the future, and we wanted to create a game which pushes back the boundaries and brings a whole new level of quality to that platform.

Rob Hewson about Hydrophobia
Hooked Gamers: Hydrophobia is set to be an episodic trilogy. Episodic releases of video games have been a mixed bag over the past decade. Wherein Valve has delivered fantastic results with the Half-Life 2 episodes, albeit at a very lackluster pace that contradicts the ideal episodic model, only a handful of others, such as have seen success at this approach to design. Why go this route?

Rob Hewson: Trilogy is more of an appropriate term than episode. We have created a vast universe and an incredible amount of tech which demands a trilogy to do it justice.

DLC in a single-player game is uncommon to say the least. If you were to have downloadable content in Hydrophobia down the line would you take the approach of extra challenge rooms or would you look at continuing or augmenting the game's story?

We don’t have anything to announce regarding DLC at the moment, but if we do it we will be looking to continue providing unique and compelling gameplay within the Hydrophobia universe.

Hooked Gamers: Is there anything else you'd like to share with our readers about Hydrophobia or Dark Energy in general? Thoughts, comments, random shout outs?

Rob Hewson: Just to say thank you for your time and we hope you enjoy the game.