GDC 2012: Eidos Montreal “Truly Sorry” For Deus Ex Boss Fights, “Kind of Forgot” About Them
Written Wednesday, March 07, 2012 By Dan WebbView author's profile
Deus Ex: Human Revolution was a brilliant game. That much is certain. If there was one criticism levelled at it though, it was that the game’s boss fights were, for want of a better word, duff. Eidos Montreal know this now and are “truly sorry” for not putting enough effort in them.
Speaking at the “Reimagining a Classic: The Design Challenges of Deus Ex: Human Revolution” talk at this year’s GDC, Deus Ex’s Senior Game Designer, Francois Lapikas, spoke about them in great detail.
“The problem with boss fights... Remember the production sheets I was talking about at the beginning,” said Lapikas, referring to an earlier slide which broke down every aspect of Human Revolution at the pre-production stage to an incredible amount of detail. “We didn’t have one for boss fights. We kind of forgot about it.”
“It shows how important they were because we didn’t have these sheets. We didn’t know what we were doing with boss fights. For us we saw them as a way to break the pacing, more of a way to test the player’s skills. That’s a big factor why you cannot go through them using social or stealth.”
Unlike everything else in Human Revolution, the boss fights were missed out in pre-production and put together at a much later time of development.
“We also waited until the middle of production before we tackled them,” continued Lapikas, “There was no designing during pre-production, it was during production that we started design on them. So we were also pressed by time.”
“We thought by putting enough ammo and enough weapons in the room, that would be enough for players just to defeat them and go, “That was nice, let’s go on. Playtests did flag the boss fights as a problem, but they did not flag the severity of them.”
“It was only once we shipped that we fully understood, but it was a surprise to us actually. A big surprise, not a good one. I don’t really have a solution regarding boss fights but next time we’re going to think about it more. They were a big part of the game and we should have put more effort in them, so we’re truly sorry about that.”
So there you have it… the next Deus Ex – which there will almost certainly be – will have a lot more care and attention put into the game’s boss fights. Can I get a “Hellz yes!”?