Part of Garrett’s journey – not just throughout the plot, but as an individual – is the way in which he interacts with other people. He’s out of his depth, thrown into a world gone drastically wrong and only other residents of the city can get him up to speed. Without a Facebook account to hide behind, the thief will have to get out into the world and start asking questions.
“We decided to adopt a traditional cinematic approach,” Gallagher continued, “but we try to keep it out of the way of gameplay itself, so basically you have this great first-person experience whereby Garrett internalises. He’s very intellectual, very clever and he’s quite funny, but only inside his own head, so the only person who can hear that is himself, and you.
“What’s interesting is, in the cinematics we externalise that so you actually get to see his body language, you get to see how he uses his mask when he has to deal with other characters. It’s a nice, contrasted story-telling style that I think will be very effective.”
It’s a noble approach, as Garrett’s internal mutterings will surely add new layers to the character we already know, he will still remain a mysterious, imposing figure to those around him. With that in mind, I asked Gallagher if the player will have a direct impact on the Thief’s plot and world state depending on Garrett’s interactions with the populace.
“I won’t lie to you, the story’s linear,” he replied. “It’s a single arc where Garrett sets himself up – ‘I do not kill without good reason’ – and the arc kind of follows that in a way. But in the end you buy the game, it’s your game, I’m not going to say ‘you must play like that’. I think as a player, even though you’re going to follow the story, the tools that you choose – do you want to be the ghost, non-lethal, undetected, or kill as many people as you want? – are up to you.”