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Mighty Mechs And Anime Inspirations – Dual Gear Developer Weighs In

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Dual Gear, a turn-based mech combat game that still manages to channel fast-paced, live combat between giant robots, has recently released a demo on Steam to let players have a taste of its combat and play style.

 

Pongpat Pongsakorntorn, one of the developers at Orbital Speed Studio who’s hard at work creating huge metal mechs for players to fight with, spoke to us about some of the work that’s gone into the details of making the Dual Gear mechs work, and how players can customize their own heavy metal war machines.

 

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What are your thoughts when designing a mech? What goes into making an interesting giant robot, from design and gameplay perspectives?

 

We started this project with the idea of a “Turn-Based game where you can boost into combat”. I personally designed the movement to be in S shape! Like a snake! I think those are the symbol of mobility, strength, and advance technology. I integrate those symbols into the actual design of the Dual Gear too. As you can see, All of the machines will have some sort of snake-like influence. Of course, how the mech will move is also depend on the player too.

 

In the trailer, the mechs give a sense of weight and power while still looking very mobile. How do you create that sense of being a heavy, strong mech through visuals and movement?

 

Well, if you compare us with most mecha anime and games, Dual Gear are actually pretty small. They are only around 6 to 8 metres tall. If the Dual Gear were real, they would be carrying lots of advanced weaponry.  In order to use it effectively, they need to have really good mobility. The pilot mind is also linked to the Dual Gear itself, allowing a much more precise control of the unit. That is probably one of the biggest tests for our animation team. Using the right timing animation and camera shake help us achieve that.

 

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Dual Gear says that it is turn-based, but also mentions real-time shooting and decision-making. Can you tell us more about how these two things work together?

 

The game will let players control a single unit at one time. Once their Generator Output(GP gauge) or Action point run dry, the player will switch to another unit in the squad. When the player is moving, the enemy will attack the player unit. This will force the player into action. Will you attack back or dodge? The player will have to manage their resources well while controlling the unit at the same time. We wanted Dual Gear to be a turn-based game that will turn on your adrenaline.

 

The trailer shows what seems to be location-specific damage. What happens to various parts as they receive damage? How does this affect the player?

 

Dual Gear are made up of 5 different parts (Main Camera, Cockpit, Arms, Legs and Backpack). All of the parts, except the backpack, will have their own Health bar, Armor Points, and Core points. Each represents the inner and outer frame of the mech. When the AP reach 0, the armor is destroyed. Then, the CP can be damaged. When the CP reach 0, the part is destroyed.

 

There are weapons and skills that can penetrate the armor completely.   Each destroyed part will affect the unit differently. You will lose accuracy if the main camera is destroyed, you won’t be able to use the weapon on the right arm if it was destroyed, etc.

 

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How will players acquire parts in the game, and how will those parts make the mechs more effective?

 

Parts can be picked up from destroyed enemies, completing missions, or finding hidden blueprints. The player can also buy parts from the in-game market.  Each part will have unique STATs and abilities.

 

How does mech customization work in Dual Gear? Tell us about the mech designs and how they will affect players.

 

Dual Gear will let the player customize all the parts. The player will be able to change color and camouflage (which will also give an advantage on certain types of terrain, helping players blend with the environment and increasing their dodging chance).  We have several different type of parts too. Each type will have it own advantage. We have multi-Legs(climb obstacles), Hover (faster and a lot further), Tank (carrying more weight) and Air- Type. The leg is extremely important, as it represents the unit’s mobility. There will be customization options for space battles, too!

 

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How does the EXP system work? Will it improve overall stats for a certain mech, the pilot, or affect specific parts? What happens when a player levels up?

 

All of the skills in the game come from the pilot. Each pilot will be efficient with a different type of weapon (depend on which weapon they use often). They will also gain EXP, which can be used to unlock better skills. Every weapon will have around 10 to 20 skills that can be unlocked.

 

When the pilot LV’s up, they will gain Status points. These points can be used to improve the stats of the pilot. You can also use Dual Points, which are gained from using weapons frequently. to unlock skills. However, the Dual Point module is not yet ready for the Pre-Alpha Demo.

 

The Steam page mentions that you want to make enemies able to surrender in a later update. How will players be able to make an enemy give up?

 

One of the thing I liked the most from the old-school games like Super Robot and SD Gundam Generation is capturing enemy units. In Dual Gear, some pilots will have the skill to negotiate the surrender of enemy units. It could result in recruiting new pilots or gaining parts for free. Sometimes, the surrendering pilots will request the player to do some mini mission first before giving in. Perhaps trying to negotiate with a boss could prove useful.

Alistair Wong
Very avid gamer with writing tendencies. Fan of Rockman and Pokémon and lots more!