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 Геройский Уголок / Heroes V

Interview with Fabrice Cambounet in Moscow
by LaBoule (Heroic Corner)

HC - question from Heroic Corner
FC - answer by Fabrice Cambounet

Part I (Heroes IV and III)

Fabrice Cambounet in Moscow
(December 6, 2003)

HC: Let us talk first about Heroes IV and III. Have you any plans for further development or rebuilding of Heroes IV? Or this project is closed?

FC: We don't have any plans for the moment, but I am discussing with people of Equlibris and looking what we can do with them. I don't think that there really will be a release of Heroes IV again, but, probably, if we can find some deals with the people of Equlibris, we could do something. I do not know. It is just discussions at the moment.

HC: As far as I understood you can support them somehow?

FC: The discussions are about source codes for Heroes IV and the same with the people of Wake of Gods for Heroes III. And as a result we could publish some sort of add-on for Heroes IV. The problem right now is to check the quality of what they have done up to now; and also to see if the sales people from Ubisoft will be interested in that, because sales of the add-on's of Heroes IV were really poor. So I don't know how much they will be interested in that.

HC: Perhaps it is an old deal, but the quality of Equlibris may be much higher than that of original Heroes IV.

FC: Ya-ya. But the case is that marketing and sales people are interesting in marketing and sales, of course, so they just count for numbers and decide whether they are interested or not. I think that the most difficult is to convince them to find something interesting in my point of view, so that it will be a success in retailing. But if we'll really do something with Heroes IV, the release of add-on for Heroes IV must be done next year.

HC: Well. Next question is about source codes. Will you give them to Equlibris team?

FC: That's what I say. It depends on what if we find some deal. It is not the same as about Heroes III because this game is too old to release some add-on's to it.

HC: Is there any problems, connected with intellectual property rights?

FC: Of course. If you give someone source codes it basically means that you give the game itself. UbiSoft has bought the brand of Heroes of Might and Magic and everything included with that including source codes of previous games. These source codes are of some value because we will use them in Heroes V development.


Part II (Heroes V)

HC: Concerning Heroes V. As for me, personally I like new art style of Heroes V, but many people from our forum...

FC: Yeah. I read topics in Heroic Corner, but the poll opinions on your front page are more divided, it is like 50:50 "for/against". I don't know why people are so afraid on this topic itself, because other communities like Celestial Heavens, Archangel Castle and Polish and German communities are very positive about new art style. There is few concerns about some detail on sketches (as on Archangel's sketch), but generally it seems they like it. So I don't know why it is so special for Russia.

HC: They afraid that Heroes V will be like Japanese anime, in spirit of Final Fantasy an so on. But this is very preliminary sketches, isn't it?

FC: Yes. The style we want to have is much more modern style than that of Heroes III and IV. It is more cartoon style and the reference is very mixed. It is not Final Fantasy type of games. The biggest influence is mostly about all European comic books... products of this type. If Archangel has a big sword it doesn't mean that it is Final Fantasy. I think this is much more modern style in comparison with previous Heroes games and it is what we want to do.

HC: And who are the painters of these sketches? Are they inspired somehow by Japanese anime?

FC: They are inspired by... The sources that I know, they does include, of course, Japanese anime, as Japanese comic books, but mostly, I think, also the games they played and all comic books. And if you compare European, American и Japanese comic books, you'll find that new Heroes style is much more in line with European than Japanese comic books. 

HC: O, this is European modern style. Yes?

FC: Yes. I don't know if these comic books are being sold in Russia. If not, this is may be the reason why people from your forum thought that it is Japanese style. For they should look at what is produced in Europe also. 

HC: As you have said on The Round Table, the game will be rendered in 3D. Will it be really full 3D or pseudo-3D like in Heroes IV?

FC: Yes. It will be really 3D.

HC: But it is very difficult to realize new smooth "cartoon style" of the game on somewhat rough 3D-models, isn't it?

FC: Yes, it is difficult, but 3D provides numerous advantages: zoom in/out with many details, better animation, a number of special effects... You gain more than you loose. And I think we wont lose much.

HC: But how about system requirements? It seems they will be too high in such a case.

FC: Not too high. Even Heroes IV required rather good videocards. We are planning that Heroes V will be good run on low current computers (not futures ones, but nowadays).

HC: What is current stage of development of Heroes V? Nothing except for art sketches?

FC: As I said it is a very early development stage. We started about 1.5 months ago or so, and also what have been done are texts, design, plannings, allocations, all the management stuff, rough scenarios, discussions. It is the first basic elements that cannot be displayed, because, I think, it is not very interesting to receive a management document - it is not impressive to people.

HC: What can you say about release date?

FC: Hm. Only one is definitely: not in the next year.

HC: And what about proposals from our site and other communities as well? 

FC: What have you sent was really interesting, really useful and was used in our discussions. It was very interesting to use this kind of feedback, as, for example, on question should Heroes be off or on battlefield - we take it into account. So it was really interesting. I also red a few more threads on forums and sometimes I have found rather interesting ideas. 

HC: Thank you, Fabrice. If my English would better, I would ask you further, more profound questions.

FC: Thank you, Igor.


Heroes V



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