4Q Interview: Gameloft - Rogue Planet

Posted by Chris Hall on November 21st, 2009

We first saw Agharta's Rogue Planet at WWDC, but then it vanished into thin air. What was once expected to be a July release soon became a question mark, but behind the scenes, Agharta and Gameloft were getting together to make Rogue Planet all that it could be. Well now that the possibly soon to be classic turn based strategy game is soon to be released, we talked to Aurelien Kerbeci, CEO of Agharta Studios, about the game and and all the buzz around it. Enjoy the interview!

Chris (148apps) - First off, the game looks quite amazing. I was a bit worried there that it was never going to come out though. I remember reading about a July release a while back and thought that this one died in the nexus of the app universe. Ha, I guess I should have a question here. What caused the long release delay?

Aurelien - After we presented the game at Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference in San Francisco, we thought about releasing the game as is and offer a few features through updates. This would give us a chance to get back to developing projects that we had put on hold.

It was after that presentation that we began our collaboration with Gameloft, and we decided as a group to change our schedules. This was how we finally integrated the features we had set aside into the final game in time for its release date.

Chris -Gameloft does have a penchant for creating the best game trailers on the market, and your new one is quite amazing. While typically developing their own games, has Gameloft added their own personal flair or is this an all Agharta piece of software?

Aurelien - (smiles) …We have our fingers crossed :) It’s true that Gameloft does great work. The people with whom we were in contact were all very qualified and motivated. Gameloft organized focus groups which prompted us to make certain modifications and adjustments to refine the game a little more.

Thanks to their teams, Rogue Planet will be available in five languages, which is very important for gamers all over the world as the game contains a great deal of dialog and texts describing units, terrain, and buildings.

The game was developed entirely in-house, and Gameloft trusted us regarding the quality and content of the game.

Chris - Before the original launch there was word that the game was waiting for 3.0 to get real multiplayer. Since 3.0 has been out for a while now, are there any plans to have a killer multiplayer system implemented?

Aurelien - Without the new features Apple added in the 3.0 update, we would not have been able to implement an online multiplayer system truly adapted for Rogue Planet. Indeed, turn-based strategy games in general offer calculated gameplay, and push notifications are ideal for this kind of situation and how players use their iPhone.

We really hope to concentrate on the heart of the game, and as a result we have spent a lot of time refining and improving the solo and local multiplayer modes; this is why we expect to add an online multiplayer mode using push notifications as a free update.

Chris - Here is the obligatory final question. What makes Rogue Planet not only the greatest turn based strategy game, but the greatest app in the app store?

Aurelien - One single answer: Rogue Planet is the closest thing to a game like the ones on rival handheld consoles currently available for the iPhone.

Rogue Planet offers a unique experience with its rich gameplay, its high-quality graphics and its 19 Story-mode missions, 15 additional missions (all varied and ranging in scope from very small to very large), and its medals, all of which offer more than 100 hours of
gameplay… and that’s without taking into account the unlimited possibilities available in local multiplayer mode!
Thanks so much to Aurelien Kerbeci for the interview and Carmen Pearson of Gameloft for setting it up.

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