In the Indie Game HQ’s most recent interview we had the privilege to speak with Marek Rosa, CEO and Creative Director at Keen Software House. Keen Software House is currently working on Miner Wars 2081 which is currently posted on Steam Greenlight. The game combines great graphics with an amazing multiplayer experience.
About Miner Wars 2081
Miner Wars is a first-person action-survival space simulation game set in the year 2081. This first installment of the Miner Wars franchise is currently being developed by Keen Software House a. s., an independent software company founded and lead by Marek Rosa. There are currently two branches: Miner Wars 2081 as a classical single-player, co-op and multi-player and Miner Wars MMO as a massive multiplayer online version.
Taking place in a post-apocalyptic inner Solar System, approximately 10 years after the destruction of Earth. The premise of the story supposes a very limited technological advancement, and a population desperately struggling to live long-term in space without a home planet. War breaks out over vital resources such as food, oxygen and fuel.
Official development of the project commenced in 2009. Miner Wars runs on the VRAGE engine, built and tailored specifically for the title. (Miner Wars)
Indie Game HQ: Can you tell us a little bit about Keen Software House?
Marek: Keen Software House was started by me, Marek Rosa, in 2009. It’s primary project was Miner Wars and VRAGE engine and I was the only team member – programmer and CEO. Then in 2009 volunteer developers started to join my team, which pushed me to release the pre-alpha version of Miner Wars 2081 and get some first sales. This went great, so I started looking for some external capital, to speed up the development. This phase ended in 2011 – I hired a few ex-2K developers and we started full-scale development. Interesting thing is that we basically build this game in the last 1.5 year, since all my previous development was a fraction of the whole scope.
Indie Game HQ: How long have you been working on Miner Wars 2081?
Marek: First experiments started 10 years ago, in C++ and OpenGL. I was playing with voxel destructible environments. Then I kind of paused it due to not having enough time to work on it fulltime. Then I resumed it 3-4 years ago, and I am working on it since then – days / nights / weekends. I hope it will bring results and people will like the game.
Indie Game HQ: What were some major inspirations for Miner Wars 2081?
Marek: In one way I didn’t take inspiration from any other game, I just wanted to make something that’s new and my own – really large open world space sim with good physics and destructible environment, and story and all that. On the other way, there were some influences, Descent and Forsaken for 6DOF and interior levels, Call of Duty for Hollywood-style missions, GTA for open world environments, Morrowind for RPG-like elements, Tunneler and Red Faction for destructible environment, and so on.
Indie Game HQ: How expansive is the universe of Miner Wars 2081?
Marek: Player can travel in the whole solar system, which is about millions of billions of sectors. Each sector is 50x50x50 kilometers. We didn’t want to limit player’s decision where to travel so we made this whole space available for traveling. On the other side, there’s no much to do in these sectors, it’s just asteroid after asteroid. Most players will probably spend their time in one of the custom-made sectors, where are space stations and human buildings. But who knows, perhaps some players want to live like Robinson Crusoe.
Indie Game HQ: Are the worlds set or are they generated newly for each user?
Marek: Something in between – sectors are procedurally generated and they will look the same for all players. Procedurally generated since we can’t store billions of asteroids in a database, especially if there’s a good chance that nobody will ever visit that sector. And they need to be same for all players, otherwise the story won’t be possible.
Indie Game HQ: Now I know the game will receive free updates, but do you have any expansions or DLCs planned?
Marek: Well, we are not 100% decided on this, but our plan looks more or less like this: once 2081 is finished, we are going to work on ”Survival Mode”, which will focus on free-roaming and building and trading and mining. Then we have this “Miner Wars 2.5D Experiment”, which is basically the same game, just transformed into 2.5D gameplay. It’s not yet announced. It’s easy to play and efficient way for reusing our art assets and code. And then of course, Miner Wars MMO.
Indie Game HQ: Aside from Steam where else will Miner Wars 2081 be available?
Marek: Right now it’s available on our web site www.minerwars.com, Gamestop, GamersGate, Desura and few others.
Indie Game HQ: Do you have any plans on bringing the game to any other platforms?
Marek: We would like to bring it to XBOX, and then perhaps in future make it for all platforms, even mobile devices.
Indie Game HQ: Thanks for your time. Would you like to add anything for our readers?
Marek: Thanks for reading this interview and if you guys can, please visit our greenlight page and vote for us. It would help a lot: here
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