Dan Sutton Discusses the Ins and Outs of Red Faction: Armageddon

Red Faction: Armageddon

Dan Sutton is the Team Project Lead of Red Faction: Armageddon and with the game’s release on its way, GamerNode’s Mike Murphy got the chance to sit down with Sutton to talk about the game. Sutton discussed Armageddon’s story, the change of scenery to an underground Mars, and much more.


Mike Murphy, GamerNode: This is Mike Murphy, News Director for GamerNode.com, and I am here with Dan Sutton, Team Project Lead for Red Faction: Armageddon. How are you doing?

Dan Sutton: I’m doing very well.

GN: So my first question. For those who don’t know, when in the Red Faction storyline exactly does Armageddon take place? What’s going on at the start of the game?

DS: Armageddon takes place about two generations after Red Faction: Guerilla did. And you are a descendent of Alex Mason, who was the main character in Red Faction: Guerilla. You’re his grandson. You learn a little bit more about his father through Red Faction: Origins, which is a two-hour movie we’re doing with the Scyfy Channel. But basically you’re a descendent of lineage of the Mason family and what you’re trying to do is…you’ve fought alongside the Red Faction. You’re still with them and this cataclysmic event has happened on the surface of Mars that has forced everybody underground. And Darius’ journey is trying to figure out what happened with that, too. And also try to fend off this new threat that has come to the surface when a religious group, the Marauders, have release this plague. These alien-like creatures on the planet.

GN: That actually was going to bring me to my next question. My next question was going to be where exactly did these aliens come from and how exactly were they let loose? If you’re allowed to talk about it.

DS: Oh , yeah. Absolutely. Along the way you run into Adam Hale, who is the leader of the Marauder cultists and he and a bunch of the cultists have released these on the planet. Now it’s kind of funny because we put together this eight-hundred page document of the Red Faction universe. We’ve done this between…over the last couple of projects. And we look back there and in Red Faction 1 we released the mutants that were on Mars. And there’s a lot of kickback to these unknown things that they found on Mars…And this is our interpretation of what they found in Red Faction 1 and Red Faction 2. So they release this plague, that is Hale and the cultists, and now you’re out there trying to figure out how they got released and also try to save humanity in the process.

GN: So you say it’s more of a plagues. So does that mean that it can actually infect people and turn them into these creatures exactly?

DS: We don’t go that far, but they do infect in structures. You’ll go into an area and you’ll see all these buildings that have been overcome and they’ve been consuming these things as energy. They take natural resources and consume them and basically dry out an entire planet.

GN: For Hale, he’s the one who lets out this plague, these aliens. When the aliens take over and are let loose does his role diminish throughout the course of the game and do the aliens and the plague take on a much larger role than him as far as the main antagonist? Or does he stay pretty strongly as the main antagonist of the game?

DS: He plays pretty strongly. And the cool thing about this, actually what we think is kind of interesting is that he uses Darius as kind of his pawn to release these things. He leads Darius down there. Darius is probably the most impactful miner on the planet of Mars. And basically he uses him to let loose these aliens. And then across the game you’re trying to find out Hale, trying to fight him, trying to get rid of him and also try to rid the planet of all the aliens.

GN: When the aliens get let loose the game kinda takes a turn more from a traditional third-person shooter/action to more of a survival horror. Was that the kind of direction you guys were trying to go for with Armageddon?

DS: It’s funny because it kinda looks that way in a lot of ways that you see it. But you’re character’s a badass. He’s somebody who will mow down hundreds of thousands of aliens. It’s not on the Dead Space type survival horror like every corner you’re going to scare yourself. But you are in these dark, claustrophobic environments and you have to fight through all of these, too. I think we have shock and I think we have some scare moments but the main theme is action adventure. That’s what we’ve been about in Red Faction: Guerilla and we’re also about it in Red Faction: Armageddon.

GN: There’s obviously going to be different types of aliens in the game. Can you tell us what the different types are called? What exact characteristics and types of attacks they will have in the game?

DS: Yeah, absolutely. We have the Creepers. They’re the low-level infantry type aliens and they spew this kind of poisonous venom at you. I guess I would say that they’re not that powerful alone but they attack in swarms. So you’ll come into areas and 10, 20 of them will actually come upon you and you have to get rid of all those. The Ravagers are the next step up. They actually jump from buildings to ceilings. They use basically the environment around them to attack you. So they actually have long ranged-enhanced attacks and can attack you from there. We have the Wraiths, which are basically creatures that can pop in and out of cover. You’ll see them, and then they disappear. They use camouflage throughout the world. So they kind of surprise attack you or attack you from behind or attack you from areas that you can’t see.

And then we have some larger-scale aliens that we haven’t talked about yet. One is a Behemoth. It’s this giant, giant creature that basically lives within the caves. He can take over areas, he can use buildings, use destruction around you to take you out.

GN: And my last question. As a developer, how challenging was it to take the destructive element of a more open Red Faction: Guerilla and take it underground into a more closed-in space with the caves and mines of Armageddon?

DS: It’s challenging because…the big thing that we’re trying to focus on is 360 degrees of destruction in this game. On the surface of Mars you have what’s around you but we really didn’t have much on the ceilings, on the walls. This kind of gives us an opportunity to actually make the entire environment, everything man-made in the world, can be torn down, can be repaired, can be used as a weapon around you.

So that was one of the challenges to me. It was using this ultimate technology, improving upon it, and adding weapons to just suck people in. We have the Magnet Gun in our game, which we really feel is kind of a selling point…You can take any object in the world and [pull] it at another enemy or another building if you want to. But we also have the Nano Forge 2.0 where what we’ve done is taken destruction, and we’ve kind of reversed it. You can repair everything in the game. It sounds kind of gimmicky at first, but the cool thing is that you get it at the beginning of the game. You can use it, for example, if there’s a barricade in front of you. You can repair it back up, throw it an enemy, repair it again: infinite ammo. A way of using the world around you just by destruction.

GN: Yeah, I actually noticed that in the demo. How in a boss battle that was there you can rebuild the barricades to keep cover longer.

DS: Yeah, yeah. We hope it’s good because it’s not gimmicky. It’s not just in one place or a couple places in the game. It’s the entire world around you that you can use.

GN: Alright, cool. Thank you very much for your time.

DS: Absolutely. Thank you.



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Author: Mike Murphy View all posts by
Mike has been playing games for over two decades. His earliest memories are of shooting ducks and stomping goombas on NES, and over the years, the hobby became one of his biggest passions. Mike has worked with GamerNode as a writer and editor since 2009, giving you news, reviews, previews, a voice on the VS Node Podcast, and much more.

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