Code Lyoko DS Interview
Code Lyoko, a game based on the kids' television show, is now making the move into the gaming world. DC Studios has some really interesting ideas when it comes to putting together a game based on a group of kids who go into cyberspace to fight an evil AI. AtomicGamer had a chance to ask some questions about the upcoming title, so here they are:
AG: So, who are you and what exactly do you do?
DK: My name is Dorian Kieken, Code Lyoko Producer at DC studios.
AG: I and many other gamers likely are not very familiar with the Code Lyoko cartoon. Can you tell us a bit about the premise behind the cartoon?
DK: The animated cartoon series Code Lyoko is about kids going to a virtual world to fight an evil type of AI. This evil AI entity tries to break into the real world and it’s up to the kids to save the day. It’s a mix between 2D Animation (representing the real world) and 3D Animation (representing the virtual world).
AG: One of the game's features focuses around the transition from 2D adventuring to 3D Action Role-playing. How is this actually implemented in the game?
DK: Code Lyoko, the video game, follows the path of the license. It is a mix between 2D (for real world) and 3D (for the virtual world) and utilizes different genres. The 2D section of the game features a Mystery/Exploration type of gameplay. On the 3D side, the player can fight different monsters with different abilities, upgrade his different characters with new combos, increase his/her health points as well as finish a puzzle type of game that allows him to hack into computers.
AG: How will you implement usage of the touchscreen in this version?
DK: The game makes great use of the touch screen, and at times almost acts as a space for additional buttons in the 3D levels. IN the 2D quests the characters can be controlled using the stylus only. IN the puzzle games the stylus is used to complete the sequence and position the pieces of the jigsaw on the puzzle board.
AG: Can you give us a quick runthrough of just what goes into playing through one of the game's levels?
DK: The gameplay is really balanced between 2D mission quests and 3D platform/combat levels with a zest of puzzle and racing. It is really hard to describe one level only when the game has so much more to offer. However, I will describe the first 3D tutorial level. First you are playing Ulrich and get a feel for his movements and attacks (using a sword). You evolve in sector I, which is a desert environment. Once you reach the first saving point, you change characters with Odd. You are then prompted to use his special ability to climb a mountain and then you are facing a series of enemies to destroy using your laser weapons. Once you passed this stage, Odd reaches the next saving point and the player switches character with Yumi who is using her telekinesis power to levitate a boulder and then fight a series of monsters with her dedicated weapon (Metal Fans). Again, after defeating the monsters, the player reaches a new saving point and switch for Ulrich and uses his dash ability to cross a moving platform…more combat and the last part of this level requires the player to use the last playable character called Aelita to levitate above a giant valley in order to access a tower. After a short cut scene, showing Aelita entering the tower, the gameplay changes to the Touch screen puzzle solving mini-game which ends the level.
AG: Your site says the game will have 15 quests and 15 levels -- about how long will these last?
DK: You can estimate the total time to complete the game to 25 hours. The 2D quest can take a long time if you decide to spend some time exploring the environment with all its details and characters.
AG: Are there any secrets or collectible items to make you want to go back and play through a second time?
DK: Internet Codes to be used on the Code Lyoko web site to unlock exclusive content are unlockable and require playing the puzzle games as a stand alone version.
AG: According to your site, there is "an emphasis on team interaction, puzzle solving, exploration and intense combat". How is this actually implemented in game?
DK: Practically everything in the game relies on using each character equally instead of relying on one or two for the majority of the experience. With the DS we wanted to emphasize the notion of teamwork, but there is no way you can have all four characters on screen at the same time. Therefore we came up with the character switching system, where each character has their own combat and environmental uses. Yumi can levitate objects, Odd can climb and Ulrich can run fast through dangerous areas. You are going to need to use all characters different skills to navigate thought each level.
Thanks for your time, Dorian! If you are interested in the game, be sure to check out our upcoming review. The game is available at your favorite game store as we speak.