modDB.com: State your real name, job, place where you are from and age!
Bradman: I'm Brad *bradman* Paras, I do a lot of contract design work, but currently I'm working for a university developing educational hockey games. I live on the West Coast in Vancouver, Canada. I'm 21, just finished up my degree in Interactive Arts/Comp Sci, and am looking to do my Masters in Educational Gaming (hard life eh?).
modDB.com: Lego Warz was thought up when? Why the Lego? Is the mod like another game or mod in your opinion?
Bradman: LegoWarz the game was thought up in February of 2003. Less than a year prior to that date, Siv (our lead modeler), a couple friends of mine, and I created our first 3D short, a video about a Legoman who gets stranded in a bathroom and has to find his way back to the Lego pile. We created this video as part of course at school in which we were learning 3Ds Max. This video renewed our love for Lego and when January of this year came around, I was given the opportunity to spend a few months developing any game I chose for credits in university!
Why the Lego? Why not the Lego?! There are so many mods out there that are really great, but so many of them are just becoming the same thing over and over. Lego rules, we all know that, and while there are Lego games out there, they're all made for kids 12 and under. Some of these games have some pretty cool ideas...but what lacks in them is the ability to play them on-line with your friends - and that's a big part of Lego!
As you probably know, the cool thing about Lego is that you can build and do almost anything with it. The more and more time we spend on this mod, we realize that there's a lot more to it than just Lego wars. The Wave Race mission is a testament to this. We're hoping that by the time the official game is released, the game will bring together great game-play from many mods and games out there with a Lego twist, and will do it in multi-player glory!
modDB.com: How long have you been working on Lego Warz?
Bradman: LegoWarz has been in development for about 2 months. In that period, we've probably had about 5-10 nights of decent sleep.
modDB.com: Describe the best feature in the mod in your opinion? What should the person look for that they might miss?
Bradman: The best feature in LegoWarz is definitely the vehicles. Legomen are cool, but when you play with Lego, most of the time you (well at least I do) spend your time trying to make the coolest car or helicopter! And that is what we've done with LegoWarz. In our first Beta, we released 5 brand new vehicles, 4 based off of actual Lego collections, and 1 designed completely by us out of real Lego pieces. We even have a motorcycle, which is a first in v1.46 I believe.
The vehicles included in the beta are the same across both teams. This will NOT be the case in the final version. Each team of Legos (right now we have the SpaceDudes and Navy-Seals), will have their very own distinct collection of vehicles. Some teams will be primarily land based, others air and sea. We believe this will add a very interesting dynamic to the game-play experience. I won't go into that yet. Keeping on topic, the player should keep an eye out for the cool icons at the bottom of the screen, you don't wanna miss those!! =)
modDB.com: Describe the weapons and what the weapon you will use the most and why?
Bradman: You'll find the weapons in LegoWarz to be unique in a different sorta way. Like the SMG and the Sniper, they'll be based off of common weapon types, but the way you use them will be slightly different. Take the SMG, for example. The SMG is Lego so it is rather smooth and simple. On screen there are cross-hairs, but if you switch to Optics view (a cool feature in Operation Flashpoint), you'll simply see the round front of the weapon. We could have created sophisticated weapons with precise aiming devices attached to them, but this game is about Lego and the weapons you'll see in the game will very closely resemble Lego style weapons.
The usage of weapons will depend on your playing style. Those who like to hide in bushes and take fewer shots will find themselves hiding in bushes, being careful with each shot. Those who want to blow their opponents into thousands of pieces will probably choose the bazooka.
modDB.com: How is the damage system in Lego Warz?
Bradman: LegoWarz has the most sophisticated damage system you've ever seen in a video game. Each character has 270 hit points, each with separate animations and AI responses. Ya right! This game is a Lego game so the damage system will also closely reflect Lego characteristics - headshots, etc. We're working on implementing a more complex damage system where Lego pieces actually separate. That's top secret stuff though.
modDB.com: Gameplays what’s your favorite and explain them!
Bradman: Personally, I love a challenge, and the best challenge (sometimes) comes from playing with other human beings. Fortunately, now there are a lot of gameplay styles that support multi-player. Some of my favorites are team objective based games (thank you Counter Strike), racing (any sort - car, air, snowboarding, you name it...yum speed), and the RTS game-play style.
I did most of the mission design and scripting for the LegoWarz Beta 1.0 and if you take a close look at it, you'll notice these gameplay styles making their way into it. You've got the ultimate team objective based game, Capture the Flag. This game is an all-time favorite because you have to manage defense, offense, and raw chance all at the same time. Add in a few variables such as vehicles and the game-play possibilities are endless. Bomb Run also fits in this category. You're in a team and your objective is to get your Bomb Truck to your opponent’s base first. There's a number of strategies you could take but I won't go into that and will let you find out for yourself.
And of course, I couldn't help but get some racing action into the game. Wave Race is all about taking the shortest route around a track with a few obstacles. I love the rush you get when you know that in the next corner you are going to own your opponent and make them wish they had shaved off a few milliseconds earlier in the race. Even Bomb Run has a racing element to it.
modDB.com: I see on the site you keep changing the engine. Why?
Bradman: Whereas some mods and even retail games are based off of a cool engine, LegoWarz is not. As you now know, one of the most important features in LegoWarz is in fact the vehicles. When choosing an engine, we realized that whatever engine we chose better have good support for vehicles. And not just good vehicles, a wide range of vehicles. This immediate limited our selection to Battlefield 1942, Operation Flashpoint, and a few others that sorta did the job like Tribes II. Operation Flashpoint is an all time favorite of mine, but at the time we started the mod, Battlefield was new and really picking up so we realized that if we wanted to make a game that many people could play, Battlefield would be the engine of choice.
After about a month of little progress, we realized that the most important part of LegoWarz was being sacrificed for BF1942. We were having major difficulty programming new game modes into the engine. Even if you look now, most of the mods for BF1942 are simply mods - modifications of the existing models and textures. LegoWarz is much more than that, it is a new way of playing multi-player games. At this point, we realized that Operation Flashpoint was the engine that could do the job. With a sophisticated built in mission editor, support of external scripts, and C++ based model code, Operation Flashpoint allows for very different changes in minimal time. OFP is a big part of the reason we were able to create such a full-featured mod in such little time.
That said, LegoWarz remains to be about the game and not the engine so we are open to developing new iterations of the mod on new engines as they come out if we feel that they have the potential of expanding the game even more.
modDB.com: Explain how the player classes will work and why I should be one over the other in your opinion:
Bradman: When LegoWarz is completed, each team will be different, and each class within these teams will vary as well. The NavySeals will have snipers, commanders, and other similar classes. The SpaceDudes, though, will have different classes that use weapons like lasers and drive vehicles like space ships. If we were to have a new team called the PirateGuys, they'd probably have classes like Swordsman, Gunman, and Sea Captain. The different teams will each have their own strengths and weaknesses and these will be reflected in the vehicles they drive, the weapons they use, and the camouflage their gear provides. When you play the game, you will want to choose the team and class that best suits your playing style.
modDB.com: What mods do you like?
Bradman: I'm not a big fan of Deathmatch game-play, so when I got my hands on CounterStrike beta 3.0 or whatever it was at the time, I was an instant fan. Even still Counter Strike remains as one of my favorites because of its good mix of team-play and individual heroics. I also enjoy war-based mods such as Day of Defeat, but I wish there were more mods out there that fit under the Comical/Fun category. I'm very thankful for Moddb, though, which provides a way for these not-so-mainstream mods to find their way to players who enjoy a little fun. Gimme a mod that does something new and different and I'm sure you'll find me playing it!
modDB.com: Final thoughts:
Bradman: Play mods or they won't survive. Make mods that are different or they'll be overlooked. Make games because you love to or they'll be uninspired. Play LegoWarz or else.
Thanks for your time and concentration!
Become the Lego.
[page=Some eye candy]
All of the following eye candy is taken straight from lego wars image gallery... fab aint it!