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Rebel Galaxy at PAX South: Interview with Travis Baldree, Developer and CEO of Double Damage Games

APGNation’s Jeff Pannell had a chance to talk with Travis Baldree, developer and CEO of Double Damage Games regarding their upcoming game Rebel Galaxy. Here’s Baldree’s take on it:

Rebel Galaxy is a space scoundrel simulator. So if you were to take the naval combat from [Assasin’s CreedBlack Flag and put it in space and you add some Star Control 2, and some Wing Commander Privateer and a little bit of Firefly that’s more or less what it is”

Rebel Galaxy will pit the player in what Badree calls a “Han Solo” kind of experience. Players will have the option to fill the roles of pirates, mercenaries, traders, miners, bounty hunters, or a mix of everything. There are also options of joining guilds and running missions to influence the various factions within the game universe. All player choices will have an effect on the stance they hold with factions. Dialogue choices, attacking and rescuing certain ships, and other actions will tip the favor of factions for the player.

The game world will be affected by player choices as well. Players will have the option of intercepting ships carrying treaties to prevent the cessation of wars, destroy trade ships to maintain a famine and keep food prices high, and manipulate markets based on events.

Baldree described how many action RPGs tend to have little in the way of roleplaying, and emphasized that Rebel Galaxy will have a focus on roleplaying and player choices. He describes the goals of roleplaying as:

“…what we want is the ability to play a role so it’s not ‘go shoot spaceships in space’. You get to make some sort of decision about it because this is the kind of character I’m playing. The thing about Diablo or action RPGs: there are zero replaying in those games. You never make a conversation choice that change the outcome at all, all you do is put points into things. In this game you have conversations all the time and they really matter. So in the first mission there’s four ways you can do it, and they have faction implications, monetary implications, or you can do everything without combat. There’s lots of missions where you can talk your way out of it…”

The combat in the game will feature what Baldree refers to as a “turret system”, that is that each ship will be fitted with a certain number of turret slots for players to use, ranging from a two-slotted corvette to the larger behemoths rocking 16 slots. Combat for the game will take place on a 2D plane. Combat is forced on the 2D plane as it’s difficult for many players to think in a 3D environment, and mapping a 3D environment is also fairly difficult, says Baldree. The focus of the game appears to be more on fun rather than realism.

We also briefly spoke with Baldree about the inspiration for characters and ship designs::

 “For the spaceships was gritty dirty 70’s sci-fi, a kind of grungy vibe. For the aliens my direction was they should look like muppets. Dark crystal aliens, that kind of handmade sculpty look, and the characters — the humanoids, they’re not quite humans. We wanted them to fit in the world with those more muppety aliens. But really we’re kind of seat of the pants on this stuff. I’d like to say we did all this pre-planning but we didn’t. I’d like to say we have a grand total of two pieces of concept art for this game and each one took 10 minutes to make. My wife does the computer voices. Any other dude in the game is me right now. All the aliens, that’s just me. We’ll get some more voice actors but you know.”

We can look forward to Rebel Galaxy to be released first on Steam sometime in 2015. When pressed for a more specific window Baldree would only say “We have a finite amount of money, so we’ll release it before we run out”

So you space scoundrels out there keep an ear to the ground and Double Damage Game’s bank account to find out when you can get your hands on the finished product!

Need all the gritty details? Check out the full recording of our interview below!

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About The Author
Nick Bayer
Nick Bayer
Greetings Nation! The name's Nick Bayer, I'm 25 and have identified as a gamer since my father brought home Commander Keen when I was 5. I currently work as a Medical Social Worker and spend all of my free time either gaming, spending time with my beautiful fiance, or gaming with my beautiful fiance. I gradated in 2013 from Grand Valley State University with a degree in Psychology, I currently am in my final semester at Grand Valley State University for a Masters in Social Work. I mainly use PC as my gaming platform of choice, primarily enjoying the genres of RPG, action-adventure, FPS, and strategy games (Including Grand Strategy!). I also play an unhealthy amount of Dota 2. My favorites include Max Payne 2, Bioshock 1, Crusader Kings 2, The Ace Combat series (4-6), and Spec Ops: The Line. My favorite games are the ones that excel at telling wonderful stories!