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Joe Bostic Interview


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1. Why did you choose to create an RTS game and what titles influenced the design of Dune II?

We wanted to create a game that was, roughly, a melding between Populous and Civilization. We had seen some elements of game-play in the Genesis game of Herzog Zwei that we liked. We also had the Dune license so together the result was Dune II. It would have been Dune I, but Cryo had released a Dune based game prior to our release.

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2. Do you remember when in 1992 Dune II went gold or even an approximate date?

I think late '92 or early in '93. It's all a blur back then.

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3. During the development of Dune II what were some of the larger problems/challenges you experienced?

Some of the challenges were in getting the AI to behave challengingly (partially successful), getting the carryalls to pick-up and deliver units, and coming up with an understandable scoring system.

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4. The first Warcraft title came out a year or so after Dune II and it included multiplayer, was there ever any plans to include a multiplayer mode with Dune II as well?

There were some discussions about adding multiplayer, but at the time we didn't have the time or expertise to implement it. That was rectified in the

subsequent game of Command & Conquer.

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5. Who came up with the idea of House Ordos? It is mentioned in the Dune Encyclopedia but not in the novels or movie and is something we have never known for sure.

We wanted to have a third side and there wasn't a compelling and suitable one available from the movie. I think Marc Cram (producer) came up with the idea to use Ordos and we decided to give them the sneaky and devious character.

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6. In your view which game was more innovative, Dune II or the first Command & Conquer?

Dune II for trailblazing the genre and C&C for compelling high energy multi-play.

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7. What sort of involvement did you have with Dune 2000 and Emperor: Battle for Dune?

Consulting role only.

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8. I still get requests from people asking where they can pickup a copy Dune II. Has Westwood considered making the game a free download, or charging a small fee, maybe even releasing the source code?

All of those sound like good ideas. I don't know if Westwood has considered this avenue of distribution, but if they asked me, I would say YES.

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9. What are your opinions of Emperor and why do you think it failed to gain the audience other Westwood games have received?

It wasn't as innovative as I would have liked and it also suffered from difficulties of making the transition to 3D.

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10. Arguably Westwood hasn't had much success with Dune related games since Dune II. Do you think because of this it is unlikely we will see another Dune title from Westwood?

I can't forsee the future, but Command & Conquer has a stronger connection with RTS and gives us more options to create compelling games. You would have to admit that placing an RTS game in the world of Frank Herbert's Dune is a stretch.

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11. What is your role at Westwood now? And if its still not top secret what game are you working on at the moment?

I'm current Technical Director and working on the next ®evolution in the RTS genre.

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Cool

Why dont you make a "standard" letter, on this page where users can get it and send in wishes, about the dune2 free release and the source?

You can count on me in the fight for free Dune 2  ;D 8) ::)

I hope you agree with me

Thanx to Joe Bostic, doing a good work with Dune 2

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