MI6 chatted to Jon-Paul Dumont, Lead Multiplayer Designer on "From Russia With Love", about going retro with James Bond...

Jon-Paul Dumont Interview (2)
27th August 2005

Continuing from part 1...
How will the targeting system work in multiplayer? Will you be able to lock onto players or is it more manual?
It is all target lock, like I mentioned. We also have Focus Mode, similar to the single player game, but with a few changes. In the main game, you can zoom in on a target and place a precise shot on them. It’s very cool and very powerful. In MP, you have to earn the right to use it. Each player starts with a small, empty bar on their HUD. Fill it up by doing damage to other players, then burn the juice by using Focus. Each kill you get makes your bar bigger. It’s a fun way to get super charged.

Above: 4 player split screen action

What is your favourite Bond film?
My favourite film has always been “From Russia With Love.” It was pretty exciting when they picked that film for the game, because it always felt like the most spy-vs-spy oriented movie. It’s been great working on multiplayer, because I can keep some distance from the movie’s subject matter and it stays fresh.

Will any of the gadgets from the single player be useable in multiplayer?
A lot of the single player gadgets make cameos in MP. It’s a lot of fun to watch someone chase down another player with the Q-Copter.

Did you consider the option of incorporating online play? How many players will the multiplayer support and will the link up features of the XBOX/PS2 be available?
EoN featured online multiplayer, and to be honest with you, the numbers of people that played it online were much lower than what we had hoped. So, for From Russia With Love, we have decided to concentrate on four player split-screen and make it the best multiplayer game experience we can. That’s why we put so much time into our core mechanics and into modes like Survival Royale, to create an experience that makes you want to invite your buddies over, order a pizza and play FRWL for a few hours. It’s been pretty liberating to design the game with that one goal in mind. When you make a game that needs to work for both off and online, you can get stuck in the middle and mess them both up.

How many maps will feature in the multiplayer? Can we expect classic locations from the movie or other Bond movies?
There will be seven maps in From Russia With Love inspired by the movie and the game. For example, the Gypsy Camp and the Hedge Maze maps are locations taken directly from the movie while Istanbul Headquarters and Missile Silo are inspired by levels from the game. We are really happy with the diversity we have in the maps. Each one has a different personality and play style. For example, the Hedge Maze is all about stealth and sneaking up on people, while the Missile Silo is all about jumping in an assault car or a jet pack and avoiding bazooka fire. Plus, each map has at least one signature trap that players can trigger for massive damage.

Above: Gypsy camp raid

What did you think of the last film, "Die Another Day"?
My favourite part of Die Another Day is Halle Berry’s swimsuit, and not just the obvious reason - I loved the tribute to Honey Ryder from Dr. No.

Above: Sylvia Trench

Will players be able to fight each other hand-to-hand? Have any of the bonus move features from single player progressed into multiplayer?
Hand-to-Hand is also in multiplayer and will be some variation of the single player game. We are still working on it to make sure it is fun, so I don’t have a lot of details for you.

Which Bond girl should come back?
I’d love to see Sylvia Trench make another appearance, maybe next time she can make Money Penny jealous by flirting with Bond in front of her. It would also be great to see Pussy Galore back in action, maybe flying with the Blue Angels.


Tell us about the different game types available in multiplayer. Will you be able to play all modes on all maps or are certain maps exclusive to a mode?
Our big innovation this year is the Survival Royale. We always felt that multiplayer games are really fun, but they tend to be short, bit-sized experiences that players just repeat over and over. We wanted to create the feeling that you could sit down and have a longer experience that would mean something from round to round. It is a type of tournament that players can play over the course of several games and compete to be the ultimate winner at the end.

As far traditional gametypes, we concentrated on having a smaller number of well-tuned games. There will be the classic deathmatch mode, but with a twist. We have Mario Cart-style power-ups that spawn in the players’ path. Some of these will give the player extra abilities, like being invulnerable, some will mess with the player, such as making them radioactive and doing damage over time to themselves, and anyone around them, and others will just blow up. We also have experimental weapons that let you mess with other players, like the Speed Change gun. Shoot a player with it and their speed will randomly change every few seconds. Slow to a crawl, then go super fast. It’s really funny to watch your friend struggle with it. Lots of laughs!

We also have a team game called Sabotage where players race to a single bomb on the map, then try to plant it in the opponents base. The twist is that the bomb is radioactive, so it does damage to the bomb carrier, making it impossible to simply grab and run to the goal. Teams end up playing a strategic game of field position as they try to get the bomb close enough to the base to make a scoring run. When to drop the bomb and run for an armor pack or pass it off to your teamate can be game changing decisions.

We have a few more game modes in store that we will reveal later!

Above: Sean Connery as James Bond in the initial level set outside the Houses of Parliament, London

What other games have you worked on?
This is my first Bond game, and it’s exciting to work with a subject that I grew up with. I came onto to the team after finishing Lord of the Rings: The Third Age and quickly volunteered to work on the multiplayer team.

Many thanks to Jon-Paul Dumont.

Related Articles
Jon-Paul Dumont Interview (1)
"From Russia With Love" Movie Coverage
"From Russia With Love" Game Coverage