Today sees Phaser Lock Interactive launch its real-time strategy (RTS) title Final Assault for PlayStation VR, offering cross-platform multiplayer gaming with its PC-based brethren. But as VRFocus has learnt in a new interview with CEO Michael Daubert, porting the title proved to be a technical juggling act. Just like real warfare, this has provided gains and losses.
The table-top RTS has been available for PC VR headsets for almost a year and last summer Phaser Lock Interactive confirmed work was well underway on a PlayStation VR port. In fact, the port was completed in 2019 until the team hit a little snag: “We were working on the PlayStation Pro. So the pro was two months worth of work, easy port over we were happy with it and then the classic (PlayStation 4) was like taking a step back to the 90s, I felt like we were working on the N64 again,” mentions Daubert.
This meant the team had to finely optimise the PlayStation 4 version to make frame rate. “The good thing is nothing changed on the play mechanics or the game mechanics themselves, it still plays the same way,” he notes. “The major changes are in art on the classic and then we had to put unit caps.”
Originally, Final Assault allowed PC players to wage massive wars with no units caps whatsoever, that’s all about to change. “PlayStation just does not allow that,” says Daubert. “So players moving into this are going to see a change in play style. They’re not going to be able to create these huge balls of death and push them forward on the infantry, they’re going to have to find different strategies which is kind of a new challenge for the players.
“It’s not changing it drastically, it’s just going to a more realistic expectation when it comes down to RTS’s, exactly how much micromanagement and how much you can have on the screen at one time.”
To ensure matches are fair no matter which headset players are using the cap is universal: “The cap is for all versions across all platforms. Because we are cross-platform we had to balance on the PC and the PlayStation side,” he states.
While mainly technical, this decision was also made with help from Final Assault’s Discord community, asking them what they could live and not live without. So while troops might be a little more limited the addition of PlayStation VR players will expand the match pool. “What we want is that player base, that user base so that when they go into that PvP queue we’re knocking down those times waiting for a game. We’re bringing in a brand new player base when it comes to the PSVR and we’re excited for the PC people to get some ‘fresh meat’.”
PC players – and those on PlayStation VR – will also have new content to play with: “We wanted to reward the PC players that have been sticking with us through these five months of porting because we haven’t been able to do a lot of updates or patches because we’ve been so heads down in getting the port done we’re giving two new vehicles and two new maps; called our Vanguard DLC,” Daubert adds.
Fans of Final Assault will also be pleased to know Phaser Lock Interactive has more plans in store with Daubert confirming: “With this launch the game is not finished. We consider Final Assault will never be finished, it is something we will constantly be supporting. So we want to be adding new updates, we’ll be doing patches; making sure balancing patches are getting in there, listening to the players and making sure their concerns are heard.”
As Phaser Lock Interactive continues to support Final Assault, VRFocus will keep you updated on the latest updates.