Seriously! Croteam Interview
By Louva-Deus - September 26, 2005
After it was first announced Serious Sam II has been on the minds of thousands of gamers world-wide. This true sequel to the original series is action packed and will hit stores on October 10th.
Seriously! - Could you please introduce yourself and tell us, briefly, what you do in the grand scheme of things?
Admir - My name is Admir Elezovic, I am the art director in the kindergarten class called Croteam.
Seriously! - As people see more and more of the game's impressive graphics, people wonder whether they need to upgrade their computers or not. What are the official hardware requirements for Serious Sam II? What are the minimum specifications and the recommended ones to have the full Sam experience?
Admir - As you know, our Serious Engine is scalable, so you will be able to play the game on a wide range of machines.
- OS: Windows 2000 or Windows XP
- CPU: AMD Athlon or Intel Pentium
- RAM: 512MB
- GFX: Graphics board with complete support for hardware pixel shaders (compliant with DirectX 8 or higher).
- Drivers: newest available hardware drivers DirectX 9.0c
- Windows 95, 98 and ME
- DirectX 7.0 or lower 3D accelerator, or one without DirectX 9.0 compatible driver (Matrox Parhelia, nVidia TNT and GeForce1,2,4MX series, ATI Radeon 7000 series, Intel integrated graphics prior to 915G chipset, ...) Addendum]
- CPU: ~1.5 GHz Athlon XP or Pentium M or ~2 GHz Pentium4
- RAM: 256 MB
- Sound: any DirectSound compatible sound board.
- Graphics: Directx8.0/8.1 compliant or low-end DirectX 9 3D accelerator.(nVidia GeForce3 and 4 series (not MX!), GeForceFX 5200 thru 5700 series, ATI Radeon 8500 thru 9200 and X300 series, S3 DeltaChrome or XGI Volari ... )
- CPU: ~2G Hz Athlon XP or Pentium M or ~2.6 GHz Pentium4
- RAM: 512 MB
- Sound: any DirectSound compatible sound board.
- Graphics: DirectX 9 compliant 3D accelerator (nVidia GeForceFX 5900 series and GeForce 6200 and 6600 series, ATI Radeon 9500 thru 9800 and X600-X700 series, ...)
- CPU: ~2G Hz Athlon XP or ~3 GHz Pentium4
- RAM: 1024 MB
- Sound: DirectSound3D with EAX 2.0+ sound board
- Graphics: DirectX 9.0 high-end 3D accelerator nVidia GeForce6 6800 and 7800 series, ATI Radeon X800 and X850 series, ...)
Seriously! - There has been a bit of a controversy over the NVIDIA sponsorship of the game and some are worried that ATI hardware owners will be subjected to an inferior experience. Can you please clarify on this situation?
Admir - We have different graphics cards installed in offices for daily work not just NVIDIAís and we are doing testing ourselves to see how the game performs on them. Besides that, the game is testing on a wide range of machines to achieve maximal performance from that hardware. But an inferior experience can only be as a result of inferior drivers, nothing more!
Seriously! - We heard in a recent interview about the PS1.1 limitations on the XBOX GPU but are there any other differences between the console and PC version? Aside from the controller differences, how will the experience be different for console players?
Admir - Obviously, Xbox version is limited by the power of the system (less detailed geometry, lack of complex shaders) and memory (smaller textures), but besides that, the gameplay is the same. Console players will also have the help of auto-aiming and auto-centering for easier maneuvering. Also, we have enemies gibing more (itís a console game after all) while on PC proper death animations and Ragdoll will be used. Lastly, PC players will have a special surprise at the end that didnít make it into the Xbox version.
Seriously! - One of the big things about the new engine is its portability across platforms, currently supporting Windows, Linux, and the XBOX. What can you tell us about the Linux version of the game and will it be available at the same time as the Windows release? Also, will there be a freely downloadable dedicated linux server?
Admir - Its still early to talk about it...it still needs polishing and some work to be stable and bug free. Hopefully, it will be released in a future patch.
Seriously! - It has been mentioned that one of the platforms the game could easily be ported to is the Macintosh. Will there be a Mac version of the game released? If so, how will it be affected by the shift Apple is making to Intel chips?
Admir - There are no plans at the moment for a Mac version.
Seriously! - Considering the variety of platform options it begs the question of whether everyone will be able to play together. Will Windows players be able to Co-op with their Linux, Mac, and XBOX buddies?
Admir - Unfortunately no, the Xbox version uses Xbox Live while the PC version uses GameSpy for Internet gaming. Hosting game on Linux servers for PC players is an option.
Seriously! - Many have asked if there will be a Split-Screen Multiplayer feature like there was in the previous games. Can you give us any details on that?
Admir - Xbox version will have system link and Xbox Live, while the PC version will have LAN and internet multiplayer. Given the complexity of Serious Sam II, splitscreen simply wasnít possible on Xbox.
Seriously! - Speaking of Multiplayer... how about that Deathmatch mode? We know the plan is to include it in a future game patch but Serious Sam isn't really known for it's Deathmatch mode, despite its strong and loyal following. Are there any hints you can give us about what to expect, and should XBox users expect a Deathmatch mode?
Admir - When we set to do something we want to make it as good as possible, so thatís why we removed DM from the game. It wasn't polished or working as we wanted. In SS2 we added some features that will be used in future DM games, like vehicles, turrets and NPCs. The patch will also allow modders to create levels, new gameplay modes, characters, vehicles, etc.
Seriously! - One of the most fun features in the previous games was the selection of characters you could play as while you and your friends battled the hordes of enemies. What kind of selection will be available in Serious Sam II? Will there be any returning favorites, and how about secret characters?
Admir - The best Multiplayer characters from previous games will return along with a couple that are newly added.