During my time with the demo, I noticed that jumping across rooftops and dropping down from heights swayed in sensitivity, even though I’d be using the same amount of pressure on the control stick (I was given an Xbox 360 controller for the hands-on) the entire time. I’d sometimes fall to my death on jumps I’ve completed before without changing my orientation. How would this be addressed on the PC, and how will PC gamers be able to pull off precise jumps on PC controls?
SR: This is a problem we’ve seen similar feedback from earlier playtesting. We’re close to distribution phase in the game’s production, but we’re still keeping close attention on making sure players movement aligns with their intentions, and I know it can get pretty frustrating if it doesn’t work out. I’m both happy and unhappy to get this kind of feedback from you, but I’m especially grateful it lines up with what we’ve seen so we can really nail it down.
I ran into the same problem while climbing rope arrows. I’d face the platform or rooftop I wanted to jump to, and Garrett sometimes just simply lets go and drops straight down like a rock.
SR: Yeah, it’s similar to the other issue you described. From a production standpoint, I’m glad to hear of these tiny details, especially when we’re showing off a demo. It’s easy to gloss over the little things when you have a strong part of the game to show off, but I know movement and navigation is such an important facet of Thief. We want to make sure everyone feels comfortable with the controls.
Even though a different team at Eidos Montreal worked on Deus Ex: Human Revolution, what potential lessons did Thief’s team learn from that game’s development and apply towards their own?
SR: Trust your instincts. Human Revolution’s team encountered the same challenges of taking a long established franchise in a new direction while under considerable pressure from core fans going, “No, no, you can’t do that to my Deus Ex.” It’s simply impossible to listen to everybody out there, so the guys working on Thief have really learned to trust their feelings behind their decisions. Nothing would get done otherwise. If we decided to backpedal and add in “taffer” because a bunch of people wanted it, we’d get another complaint the next day from someone else saying, “Why stay stuck in the past?”