Transcript of the Atlantis Evolution GameBoomers Developer’s Café, held October 19-21, 2004.  Answering our questions about the game was Eric Safar of Atlantis Interactive Entertainment (A.I.E.)*

Compiled by Becky Waxman


Eric Safar:  Thanks to all for the warm welcome...and for the coffee!  Let's start with some questions....

(Note:  some answers will be in French as well as in English.)


Q:  I would like to know if the game is a point and click interface. I am really looking forward to the game. I try not to ruin it by seeing demos and trailers, I want to start fresh. – maggie57

A:  Absolutely. In each scene, you have to « caress » the screen with your mouse pointer to see if something interactive. Point and Click on characters, animals or direction.

I understand your wish to start fresh without any picture in your head from demo or something else. Like enter in a theater to see the movie you wait since 1 year!!!


Q:  Is the game linear? – flutist

A: Not really. In fact at each moment of the game, you have a mission to do. It's possible to explore the place, to speak with a couple of characters. But you have to complete this mission. So the exploration is free but it will be not possible to access another very different place without success the actual mission.


Q:  Is there a hint feature? Or does the game have some way of cluing you in on what to look for if you get stuck (for example, your character talking to himself about what he should be looking for, or what type of inventory object he might need).  – Jenny100

A:  C’est souvent à travers les dialogues que le joueur aura un indice. C’est un ressort fondamental du jeu d’aventure.

Players will have clues through is a fundamental feature of adventure games.


Q:  How many locations are there? – flutist 

A:  There are five main locations. You have the boat (with the limule), the village, the forest (in three parts), chel's volcano and the palate of the gods. But each main location is subdivided in several others. For example, in the God's palate, you could explore all the apartments, the garden and some other places.



Q:  I know that there is some homage to Plato’s account and related "Atlantean mythos"
But since this is not really based on these accounts, what did provide a source of inspiration for this plot line? – gatorlaw

A:  A.E. is mildly inspired by Plato’s stories. The connection being that Atlantis has always been known as an underwater city. Aside from that, the rest of the game is all dreamed up by our team.


Q:  How has living in isolation affected the Atlantean culture? Are the Atlanteans aware of the "outside" world? – Becky

A:  Les Atlantes ont été reconditionnés un à un et ont perdu leur libre arbitre. Ils n’entendent et ne vois que les informations que les dieux veulent bien leurs donner. Ils ne connaissent donc aucunes vérités et sont dociles comme des moutons.

The Atlantian have been reconditioned one by one and have lost their free will. They only hear and see information that the gods provide them. They thus do not know the truth and are flexible like sheep.


Q:  In addition to cutscenes, is there anything special about Atlantis Evolution that makes it more film-like than other games? -- Becky

A:  L’ensemble du jeu est beaucoup plus vivant qu’avant. Nous avons essayé de faire en sorte que les décors soient animés le plus souvent possible. Parfois pour aider le joueur dans la quête d’indice mais souvent uniquement pour le plaisirs d’avoir plus de vie.

The all video game is more full of life than before. We have done our best to set the game in stylized fantasy based 3D environments with Real-Time 3D elements (i.e. water).

It brings a fresh approach to the graphical style of the characters and environments. For instance, many of the environments are photorealistic with a lot of attention to detail. In contrast, the characters are rendered in a “cartoon-like” fashion reminiscent of “Disney/Pixar-like” characters. These two approaches marry well to create the impression that you’re playing a game that looks and feels like a 3D animated film.


Q:  Are there any flashbacks to the old Atlantis?  Not necessarily the Atlantis of the earlier Atlantis games, but the Atlantis of this series before it was destroyed. – Jenny100

A:  At the end of the game, you will return on the Atlantis island and maybe the flying boat would be there!!! But there is no return to the old Atlantis Background.



Q:  I'm interested in how deeply the Atlantian gods are explored in terms of culture and history. Does the game give a sense of their own world and where they came from? – honeycomb

A:  10500 years ago, when the Atlantians reigned as Masters on the external world, one of them created a computer prototype with the help of a human brain that he killed. This awful invention (although quite impressive) was a source of horror, and was hidden by the family of the inventor from generation to generation.


Q:  How many CD's in the game? -- Zanthia
Can you do a full install? if not and it is more than one CD, are multiple drives supported?  Can you load up a saved game from any CD, in other words you do not have to put in CD1 when on CD2. – Zanthia

A:  There are 4 CDs full of wonderful graphics!!
The full install is supported and in this case, no CDs are needed for the rest of the game.


Q:  With so much emphasis on character development, and with such an interesting main character to look at, why didn't you choose a third person perspective for Atlantis Evolution? – Becky

A:  Cette question est depuis longtemps posée. Et je pense que les joueurs eux même ont fourni la réponse en achetant la série Atlantis proposer en vision subjective. Je pense que beaucoup de joueurs aiment encore cette immersion que permet le mode subjectif. Mais je reconnais aussi qu’un certain nombre de joueurs aimeraient voir Atlantis basculer à la 3ième personne. Ils devraient être satisfait prochainement.. ;-)

This question has been asked few times. And I think players have already provided the answer as they bought the Atlantis series available in first person perspective. I think lots of players like this mode as it is more immersive. However, I admit that a few players would like to see Atlantis with a third person perspective. They should be satisfied soon.


Q:  Are there unlimited saves that you can name? – Zanthia

A:  Yes there are. The name of the save is the date & hours. Also, there is a snapshot of the place for each saves.


Q:  Is there an option to turn on subtitles? – Zanthia

A:  Absolutely. There is an option to put on/off the subtitles.


Q:  Just curious -- where did you get your inspiration for the design of the Lemuria? Was there a particular fascination for the tall ships of the early 20th Century? -- Becky 

A:  Des recherches historiques ont été effectuées sur les bateaux du début du siècle et notamment ceux qui fonctionnaient encore en bi-propulsion (voile et chaudière). Les designs du Lémuria sont directement issus de modèles ayant navigués.

We have done historical researches on boats dated from the beginning of the century and especially the ones which were working on sails and boiler. The Lemuria designs result directly from models having sailed.



Q:  Are the "gods" really aliens with advanced technology or something? If not, why is their technology so much more advanced than the rest of the world? – Jenny100

A:  Les dieux ont évolués et ils ont maintenus le peuple Atlantes dans la méconnaissance du monde et les ont asservis. Ils leurs ont appris à craindre et à obéir docilement. Ils n’avaient donc que peu de chance d’avoir accès à la science. Heureusement certains individus décident d’échapper à l’asservissement.

The gods have evolved and have maintained the Atlantians in the ignorance of the world and controlled them. They have taught them how to fear and obey.

They had only little chance to have access to science. Fortunately some of the Atlantians decide to escape from control.


Q:  Why call it Atlantis Evolution and not Atlantis Revolution? Freeing the Atlanteans from oppressive gods sounds more like a "revolution." – Jenny100

A:  Question intéressante. Le choix du terme Evolution a plutôt été choisi d’un point de view Marketing plutôt que uniquement du point de view des Atlantes oppressés des dieux. Mais effectivement, le terme Révolution aurait pu être un choix judicieux mais à condition qu’il y ai bien eu une révolution venant des Atlantes !!

Very interesting question! The choice of the "Evolution" term rather than "Revolution" was more a Marketing issue.

The "Revolution" term would have been a judicious choice provided that there was a revolution coming from the Atlantians!!


Q:  The Atlantis airships that were used in the previous Atlantis games make a reappearance in Atlantis Evolution, at least as an icon. And one of the graphics in the game includes a picture of Atlantis' destruction with these ships flying around. So even though Atlantis Evolution is a completely new series, you are making some connection to the past Atlantis games. Are there other ways in which you make a connection to the earlier games, or is the use of the airships an isolated occurrence? – Jenny100

A:  This ship is probably the most emblematic symbol of the series!! I really love this flying boat. For me, it's a piece of a dream and a magnificent symbol of liberty.

Atlantis is before everything else a game about Dream.

The flying boat makes a reappearance in Atlantis Evolution, but not only as an icon!!! There is a surprise at the end of the game. 


Q:  If I understand correctly you've set the date of this adventure in the year 1904, why?
Jules Verne's book "The Master of World" was published then I think...any connection to the story? – popcorneater

A:  Jules Verne's book "The Master of World" was published then I think...any connection to the story?

There is no special reason to have set the date in 1904, Curtis Hewitt the hero, is a great photograph of this period. And it was a manner to show the difference between the Gods’ technology and our technology in 1900.


Q:  Why did you decide to start a whole new Atlantis saga, rather than starting from where Beyond Atlantis 2 left off? – Becky

A:  That's a great question. We wanted to start a new series. Let the player discover brand new worlds/universes. We thought that it was time for our hero to start a new adventure.


Q:  Will there be a Mac version of the game? – LadyKestrel

A:  Actually, there is no Mac version planned. But the Marketing department at Dreamcatcher may ask me for soon a Mac version! Who knows?


Q:  Can you die within the game and if so, will you be put back just before the incident or will you have to revert to a previously saved game??? – tigger

A:  You can indeed die in the game...but we won't send you back to saved game, just back to the moment before the incident....


Q:  The screenshots we've seen thus far have looked very intriguing, and during her interview with Ms Liu, Laura mentioned that the graphics were something quite extraordinary. How would you describe the "feel" of this game in regards to environment and as we call it, "eye candy"? – Rae

A:  Adventure games in general are expected to have very high quality graphics.

The strongest point of this new series is the “dream-like” nature of the game achieved by the stunning graphics and original story. We always try to take the hand of the player and take them on a “dream sequence.” The fantasy inspired graphics, captivating story and the fact that there is no violence or rivers of blood, will make Atlantis Evolution a pleasure to play. We will take the player on a journey they can truly enjoy and put a smile on their faces.


*“A.I.E. was formed about a year ago and is comprised of many members of the former development studio at Cryo Interactive. Many members of the team also worked on the extremely popular Atlantis series and wanted to create a whole new series based on Atlantis, but out of their imaginations rather than historical data. They’ve also paid close attention to the fans, focusing the bulk of the game actually IN Atlantis, rather than traveling to different places.”

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