4Players: As you said before, Timeshift was almost finished when Sierra gave you one more year to enhance it. How close have you really been to finishing it?
Kyle Peschel: Well, on the Xbox 360 we only had seven bugs left. To give you a perspective: An average game of this size - because we have that reversal feature, which is like a bug-generating machine - we had about 14.000 bugs in the database. And only seven were left to be fixed. So I probably could have been done the next day.
Peschel: Yeah, literally the next day. Maybe the day after that.
4Players: Timeshift is pretty much THE game focusing on time shifting features. But turning back time or slowing down time has been done in many games before. Aren't you afraid that this sort of feature has already worn out?
Peschel: Absolutely not. Because I'm not doing it like anybody else. Let's say that you're thinking Max Payne or F.E.A.R. or Viewtiful Joe or any of these games: In their games you slow time. Everything was slow: you and the world. It was like a John Woo moment. I expected, like, pigeons to leave in the background and fly off in slow motion. In our game, when you slow time you, as the user, are immune. So, that means that if I was to come in
Kyle Peschel (right) answered our questions under very sunny and even more windy conditions.
here and I was to hit Time Slow and say "Stand up!", I stood up fine, would do a little dance around, went and got some groceries, came back and you guys would still trying to stand up. Time Stop is different. It's not that you guys are slow and I can move fucking fast, so that you perceive me like Dash from the Incredibles like I'm fucking zipping around and I perceive you like being really slow.
In Time Stop you can't move. I can. I can shoot my gun. I can fucking do anything that I want to do. So, I could actually hit Time Stop right now, pull out a gun, point it at each one of you, but it back away, bring time back online and act as if I had done nothing and you would not react, because you had no idea what happened. Time Reverse is the same way. Time Reverse is not like what you have seen in Prince of Persia. In Prince of Persia everything goes in reverse. It's essentially like a replay. In our game the flow of time goes reverse while you go forward. So, let's say you shot me - you shot me and I kill you: When I reverse time you come back up to life, the bullet will come out of my body and back in your gun and it will be like you never shot me - but I am still bleeding! Because I am immune (to time shifts, ed.). So, it is not like anything what you've seen in other games.
4Players: When you reverse time and play the same scene again - will it play out exactly as before or will characters act differently?
Peschel: Depends on what you're doing now. If you're in the exact same place as you where in before and do the same things as before, they're likely to do the same thing, because they are making the most intelligent choice at the time. But if the first time you guys are running straight at me and then I reverse time and then I stop over there instead of keep running here then you go: "Whow, fuck, he came over here" and you will turn and go that way. So, some scenes you will see continue, because that's what was happening, that was the most contextual thing. And other scenes you won't. In most cases the same thing won't happen again unless it was the most logical.