Under Siege™

Under Siege cinematic introUnder Siege mountain levelUnder Siege recruitment menuUnder Siege desert level

Under Siege™ details

Main role: Producer
Secondary roles: Level design / Interface design / Models / Textures /

Year: 2011
Platform: PlayStation®3
Support: Digital / PlayStation®Network
Production: 3 years
Company: Seed Studios Lda.
Publisher: Sony (SCEE, SCEA and SCE Asia)

Presentation

Under Siege™ is a PlayStaton®3 videogame available digitally on the PlayStation®Network.
It includes a single player campaign as well as online and local multiplayer content. The ingame editor enables the players to create their own maps and share them with the world.

Main features

  • Control scheme specially designed for the Dualshock3/Sixaxis controller
  • Playstation Move controller supported
  • 2 players online
  • 2 players split screen
  • Video and voice chat in game and in the lobbies
  • XMB screenshot for Facebook uploading
  • Video recording for Youtube uploading
  • Custom music support
  • Full HD 1080p (real 1920×1080)
  • Dolby Digital 5.1

PlayStation®Network Trailer

Mountains gameplay

Sales

Like any digital videogame, Under Siege does not have a retail box, instead it is sold online directly through the PlayStation3.
This allows for a much easier distribution on a wider scale with a much smaller price tag. Currently it is on sale for 4.99€ in over 60 countries in 6 languages.
There is also a Trial version available that allows the player to try the game before buying.

Development

Design
This was the first time that the team at Seed Studios made a PS3 game. It was also the first time that we published our own game. On top of it all the team grew to the double of its size with new people, some of them never actually made a videogame before. So you can imagine that production was full of new problems everyday, there were new challenges all the time to be tackled and the lack of knowledge to work them out quickly and effectively. But we made it happen and we made it good.

Game design was very early defined with its sights on transporting the RTS genre with its keyboard and mouse into the console and the gamepad.
It was at its core an iterative design process, where we would try something to see if it worked, if it didn’t we would retry again with new ideas and methods until a good result was achieved. This iterative process was used for almost everything to ensure that the gameplay experience was as good as possible. Levels were built and rebuilt, interfaces had several versions throughout the course of production and code was rewritten all the time.

Single player and multiplayer gameplay
Levels in Under Siege are divided into two main phases. In the preparation phase, the game is paused, and the player is presented with a number of squad slots in the map, to fill however he pleases. Next is the battle phase, where the player is free to explore the level and attempt to complete any objectives. Depending on the level, there may be several mid game preparation phases, so you can recruit more units or change the ones you have in play. Money is earned in the battle phase by killing enemies and collecting items, and is used in the preparation phase to recruit and train squads. Any squads that survive are carried to the next level. Squads also gain experience and level up through battle, becoming stronger and gaining new abilities.

Editor
The Editor is a fully fledged construction tool, the same used by the Under Siege team to create the game’s Main Campaign.
It allows for the contruction of new levels and maps for sharing between users.
A Manual is available for download here. The same Manual is also in-game and is acessible at all times.

Currently it has hundreds of tools that enable varied things such as:

  • Sculpting and painting the terrain
  • Adding water to create rivers and lakes
  • Changing lighting intensity, colour, position and other effects
  • Placing and rotating props like trees, houses, walls and more
  • Placing units and determine their AI, line of sight, colour and team
  • Creating cutscenes with your own lines of text and many different characters
  • Above all, creating your own logic with a simple trigger system that allows for the creation of new types of levels, modes and even totally different gameplay scenarios

Under siege 2D cutscene

If you want to know more about the making of Under Siege you can! Here I am talking about it and showing cool behind the scenes stuff -> http://vimeo.com/42418470

Team

The Under Siege team was always multitasking. Lot’s of people took secondary and tertiary roles in order to accomplish the exhaustive amount of work that we did in 3 years. We also had to rely on outsourcing for Q.A. and marketing, those teams are not described here.

Bruno Ribeiro – Lead programmer / Overall Game Design / A.I.
Ricardo Aguiar – Programmer / Interface
Ricardo Padrela – Havok Physics / Multiplayer

Jeffrey Ferreira – Art Director / Lead animator
Filipe Pichel – Character models and textures
Hélder Pinto – Enviroment design / Level design
Hélder Lopes – Animation
Filipe Sabino – Models
Emil Maxen – Models and textures (internship)

André Mealha – Character and world illustrations / Design / Concept art
Jorge Jacinto – Background illustrations

Luís Silveira – Sound
Pedro Moura – Music

Renata Vaz – Accountant / Assistant Producer
Mónica Selece – Accountant / Assistant Producer

António Gonçalves – Finance / Investment
Artur Mendes – Finance / Investment
Filipe Roquette – Marketing / Investment

Curiosities

Currently Under Siege is the second only RTS in the world that supports 4 players split-screen. The other one is Starcraft for the Nintendo64.
The original release date was not 2nd of July but 28th of April. Unfortunately that was also the date of the first hacker attack on the PSN.

Links

Official website: http://www.undersiegegame.com
Offcial PlayStation page: http://uk.playstation.com/psn/games/detail/item346881/Under-Siege%E2%84%A2
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/undersiegegame
Youtube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/UndersiegeTV
Seed Studios: http://www.seed-studios.com/