It has recently been confirmed that American Fugitive will be releasing on Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch and PC at the end of May 2019, bringing with it a modern day take on the classic sandbox action experience. With an obvious nod to the early days of the GTA franchise, it is something that we are very much looking forward to taking in… and with that in mind reached out to Fallen Tree Games in order to get a little bit more information on what we should expect to find within. They were only too happy to chat 🙂
Hi. Please could you introduce yourself – what has been your role at Fallen Tree Games and in the creation of American Fugitive?
My name is Lewis Boadle and I’m the Art Director at Fallen Tree Games. We’re a very small team, and we all wear a lot of hats. My responsibilities – aside from contributing 2D and 3D assets, included – overseeing the art pipeline, UI, some audio FX, some design / set-up and ‘Community Relations’.
… and what games have the team previously been involved with?
Prior to Fallen Tree Games our team have worked on titles including TimeSplitters, Crysis, Goldeneye 007: Reloaded and Star Wars Battlefront III (the game that never was).
So, sell it to us… why should gamers buy American Fugitive?
If you like sandbox games; if you enjoy revenge / whodunnit mysteries; if you yearn for the good old days of top-down action games; if you love car chases… all these are good reasons.
There is one obvious inspiration – the top-down GTA games – but what else has inspired you to create American Fugitive?
The game was born out of a discussion Joe [Moulding, Game Director] and I had several years ago about the lack of ‘on the run’ games. I think we were talking about the movie A PERFECT WORLD (in which Kevin Costner kidnaps but then befriends a young boy after escaping from prison). Also, THE FUGITIVE itself (although our storyline is more focused on getting revenge rather than proving your innocence). Even a bit of SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION. In fact, there are a lot of 80s and 90s crime movies that we were influenced by, as well as TV shows like DUKES OF HAZZARD and THE A-TEAM. Basically, most things we loved as kids were considered for inclusion in the game!
How has the reaction to the game at press events been? What is the best thing you have seen someone do in the game so far?
The reaction at events has so far been overwhelmingly positive. People seem to instinctively ‘get it’ and get a thrill out of creating their own carnage using the toys we’ve littered the world with. However, we are aware press events tend to elicit an ‘event mentality’ conducive to short bursts of sandbox games. The real test will be when people download the game to play in the comfort of their own home.
Probably the best thing I’ve seen someone doing was a player at Rezzed who managed to combine a flaming car with the magnetic crane to create a lethal fireball that blew half a dozen furious cops up into the air. She didn’t even break a sweat as she did it!
Should we expect any Easter eggs or hidden nuggets to discover?
Yeah, we’ve tried to add in plenty of stuff for people to find. I mean, don’t expect TimeSplitters arcade games, but there are lots of collectibles, loot stashes and my favourite weapon… a toilet brush. Some of the stashes require deciphering a clue, so it’ll be interesting to see how many people figure them all out!
Is there a particular character in the game we should be cautious of? And further to that, who is your favourite character?
Name a character you SHOULDN’T be cautious of! Everyone Will meets has some kind of agenda, and they’re all crooks, so trust anyone at your peril.
My favourite character is Officer Hank McCoy. He’s the Police Chief, but he’s completely corrupt and will stop at nothing to stop your crusade. Plus, he’s got an amazing moustache.
In terms of a soundtrack, what should we expect to find in American Fugitive?
We have about 25 musical tracks in game. Some are licensed tracks, and some are custom written. We reunited with our old friend Gavin Harrison to write the signature themes, and, as always, he knocked it out of the park.
Although the game is set in the 1980’s we knew we DIDN’T want an 80s soundtrack. Our music spans various facets of ‘Americana’, from rock, bluegrass and folk. The main characters all have their own themes.
Achievements are a massive part of gaming on Xbox One. What can we expect the Gamerscore giving list to look like? Have you been able to include any that gamers will have fun attempting to nail?
Here’s the list. There’s a fairly broad range of activities covered in the achievements, but we’ve tried to make them all do-able without an undue amount of frustration. Except maybe ‘Landing on The Roof of a Bank’. That’s hard!
It may be too early to say, but do you have any future plans for the game once it is in the hands of the public? Extra content? A bit of a roadmap, perhaps?
We do have a bunch of ideas we’d love to explore in future updates. However, as is often the case, we need to wait and see what the community responds to.
And lastly, who are the best and worst gamers on the Fallen Tree Games team? What is your lunchtime go-to game and who is always getting beat? 😉
Our 3D artist David Keymer is probably the best all-round gamer on the team. He plays in serious Overwatch teams so his reflexes are tuned in ways us oldies can’t hope to compete with. Oh, and our gameplay programmer – James Payne – used to play competitive Heroes of the Storm, so he’s fun to watch. I’m probably the worst, which is why I tend to play really slow games like Euro Truck Simulator 🙂
Lunchtimes are mainly Overwatch, WoW or Heroes of the Storm.
Massive thanks go out to Lewis at Fallen Tree Games for taking the time to answer our quick Qs. We are very much looking forward to seeing American Fugitive arrive on Xbox One. Are you? It’ll arrive on PC and PlayStation 4 (May 21), Nintendo Switch (May 23) and Xbox One (May 24).