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Just Cause Interview

In Just Cause, players will take on the role of a CIA agent who's deep undercover; his name is Rico Rodriguez. As Rico, players will have the freedom to venture around the 1,225 square-mile island of San Esperito . Rico's goal is to thwart the renegade government by uncovering their hidden stock-pile of weapons of mass destruction.

While the story seems rather straight-forward, the fact that every mission can be done entirely at the free-will of the player makes it very worth-while. So you can do any mission in the game, three times over, in completely different ways each time. The non-linear progression of the missions will provide players with creative and unique ways to complete any mission in the way that they see fit.

Open-ended gameplay isn't the only thing present within Just Cause, though. Vehicles ranging from fighter planes, twin engine planes, boats, station wagons and muscle cars are also present within the gameplay. For a more detailed look into this game, though, we conducted an interview with Christofer Sundberg, Founder & Creative Director, Magnus Nedfors, Lead Game Designer, and Odd Ahlgren, the Content Director, on this challenging project by Avalanche Studios.

XBC:Avalanche Studios is like a new player in the gaming industry, how do you think this affects the outlook on this ambitious project?

Avlanche Studios: Almost everyone on our crew has many years in the business and a background from a multitude of different developers developing very successful products. So we are pretty confident in our outlook.

XBC:How long has Just Cause been in development and what was the innovation behind the project?

Avlanche Studios: About two and a half years now. When we started we wanted to create a freeroaming action-game with lots of explosions, exotic scenery and fast cars to really make use of our genius landscape engine.

XBC: The game looks great in the trailers. The graphics are astounding. Are there special measures taken to retain a high-level of graphical quality and gameplay for the console version? Or will we see a significant drop in graphical quality when it comes to the current-gen consoles?

Avlanche Studios: The gameplay will be identical on all the platforms but there will of course be a slight difference in appearance between them. One of the great strengths of our engine, however, is its capability to adapt to the different characteristics of each platform. Just Cause is definitely ahead of the game graphic-wise, no matter what machine it is played on.

XBC: Are there any current plans to port this game to the next-gen consoles? Or will this be exclusive to the PC, Xbox, and PS2?

Avlanche Studios: The game will be available on yet another, unannounced platform.

XBC: In one clip we see the day and night shift over a beach with real-time shadows being affected by the environmental lighting; does this mean that the game will have elements of real-time events or shifts between day and night?

Avlanche Studios: There is a day and night cycle in the game and it affects stuff like visibility and world population. One in-game hour equals one minute in real life. Don't worry though: San Esperito is a really busy place no matter what time of day it is.

XBC: How interactive are the environments?

Avlanche Studios: There is stuff all over that that the player may interact with: tons of vehicles, equipment, weapons and people. The player can also play around with the power structures of the island, helping drug cartels and guerrillas in their struggles or making life hard on those who oppose them. You can even help liberating settlements and provinces from the dictatorial reign of the hated President Mendoza.

XBC: Will we be seeing the use of ragdoll physics in this game?

Avlanche Studios: Nope.

XBC:On the mainpage of the website, we see Rico standing there with a gun in each hand, should we take this as an indication of dual- wielding weapons?

Avlanche Studios: Of course!

XBC:Speaking of firearms and weapons, how many will be available for players to use?

Avlanche Studios: There are twenty unique personal firearms to play around with. In addition there will be loads of stationary weapons and unique vehicle weapons. Not to mention all the damn explosives.

XBC: Will there be any sort of customization features or character alterations present within the game?

Avlanche Studios: No, Rico is too suave to be altered. He is what he is. Hey, it's an action game, not a fantasy RPG.

XBC: Considering that most games in free-environments are focused so much on the freedom of exploration, we don't see a lot of other features make it into the game that distinctly sets it apart from other titles on the market, in the same genre. Hence, are there any moves, actions, or maneuvers players can perform that we don't often see in open-ended games?

Avlanche Studios: Many and diverse. Right now we are mucho proud of our stunt system, where the player can perform daredevil jumps between cars and perform hang gliding-tricks using a unique grappling hook and his trusty

XBC:How many vehicles, in total, will be present within the game?

Avlanche Studios: Over one hundred. And all are useable by the player. You can cruise through the vast landscape on everything from mopeds to battle tanks. You can soar through the skies in a gyrocopter or even a cargo plane. And if you wish to see the shoreline of San Esperito, Arr, then we have many wonderful vessels for you to enjoy, ranging from jet-skis to jet propelled speedboats.

XBC:We see tons of explosions and amazing action sequences take place, so is it safe to assume this game will garnish an 'M' rating?

Avlanche Studios: The rating is still pending at this stage.

XBC: Are there any plans for this game to support downloadable, or on-line content, for the consoles?

Avlanche Studios: At this stage no, but we still have a few more months until release so we might surprise you along the way.

XBC:Are there any other features or options present within the game that you would like to discuss, or bring out?

Avlanche Studios: What? You mean apart from the cars, the explosions, the snappy dialogue, huge gameworld, unique landscape system, the guns, the stunts, the great variety of missions, the over one million trees and the catchy theme song?

Avlanche Studios: Well... there is a brothel inside a volcano.

XBC: Some websites are reporting that this game will be released sometime in April, while others report July, and some keep it generic with a "Q2 2006" release date. Do you have a definite release date already planned?

Avlanche Studios: The definite date when the product is on the shelf is out of our hands as once we've finished the game it goes into duplication, packaging and distribution and lord knows how long that will take. Our plan for completion of the game ends in September though.

XBC: Thanks for taking time out to answer our questions. Are there any closing comments or statements you would like to make?

Avlanche Studios: Yeah, Rico does a lot of stuff in the game that seems easy, fun and cool. But it's just entertainment kids: don't try any of this at home.

Well folks, there you have it. For more info, news, and interviews, be sure to check back in with If you want to check out more screens or info, you can visit the Just Cause website at

Article By: VGcore Staff

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