As the World Cup approaches, there is something you can do while you are waiting. A rather stimulating, new contender in the soccer management arose in the gaming business, and they have something really rare so far, the whole of the game is online, code, data and can be enjoyed with years old hardware aswell, no need for a cable modem with 50ms delay to the server. I would like to thank our own John and Antoine for making this possible, read on and if thrilled check Reality Game Homepage.
GH: What is Reality-Game, could you please introduce yourself and your company?
Reality Game: Reality-Game is a young company, created in 2000 by 4 friends, fans of sports management games. Today, 12 passionate people work for Reality-Game in Paris (France) and Copenhagen (Denmark)
GH: Would you care to explain what World cup Manager is, and why soccer fans should play it?
Reality Game: World Cup Manager is a management video game, playable by up to 32 real players. This game is online multiplayer only. You choose your favourite national soccer team and have to manage it to the World Cup title. You select 23 players to go to Japan, then select 16 players for each match, as well as tactics, strategy, play style... You can heal injured players, send emails to your opponents in the game, read all statistics of your matches with a powerful and comprehensive interface.
GH: How about people who aren't fans of soccer? How can this game cater to them?
Reality Game: No need to be a real soccer fan to be interested in the World Cup ! That is why they could appreciate the game, since nearly anyone could tell which player must play on the right side of the defense or be the best scorer of the national team. Easier than a complete management game (such as Y-SoccerSim, our European Leagues based game)
GH: What was the most difficult issue behind creating Reality-game?
Reality Game: The technology to offer web-based multiplayer games with high quality. We wanted our games to be playable by anyone in the world with any hardware and Internet connexion. Then to convince people that it was worth paying for them (and we think we succeeded !)
GH: Did anything especially funny happened during the development of the game? Any anecdotes?
Reality Game: One tricky thing was to find out 40 or 50 real players with all their statistics and skills in some odd countries which are qualified for the World Cup ! Be an expert of South Korean football is quite difficult (their names are all Kim or Young !)
After that, the funniest thing was to test the game and simulate the 2002 World Cup final (the computer played fantastic matches such as Brazil vs Italy, England vs France, Argentina vs Spain...)
GH: Why did you choose to develop it online, all of the soccer sims that comes to mind are local software...
Reality Game: Our target is to provide players from the whole world with multiplayer games. Management games don't need 3D technology, and allow anybody to connect from a basic hardware with a simple modem to play against online opponents (they give their instructions before the match and connect themselves to see the result after the match)
We think that offline management games really needed multiplayer features, since you always find the way to beat the AI, which is quite impossible when your opponent is a real humain brain !
GH: What's your favorite feature in the game?
Reality Game: I would say the replay, a java window which allows the player to follow the main actions of his match minute after minute, and to understand what was wrong in his tactical choice...
Imagine you follow your favourite team on the radio, you can hear the speaker shouting after a goal, and also the results of the other teams live !
GH: What makes World Cup Manager innovative in your opinion?
Reality Game: The main innovation is the multiplayer feature. You can't stop playing since your opponents change every week, you can even enter a real community, compare your methods with other managers, all you can't do alone with your PC.
The second one is that the World Cup has never been used in the management field. Choose the tactics of your national team before the semi-finals is quite exciting, and easier for anyone who knows the major players a bit. You don't need to follow the 1st Division results every week to know what to do with Beckham or Owen !
GH: What PC games are you currently playing and what PC games are you looking forward to play?
Reality Game: Basically, we play all kinds of management games, especially Championship Manager, which next version will be released before the end of the year.
GH: Any thought about pc gaming industry today and in future?
Reality Game: We obviously think that it needs to go online, to offer the real pleasure to play against people, no more against the computer.
GH: Anything about your future plans? Any exclusive for Gamer's Hell?
Reality Game: We plan to add the national teams management in our first soccer game Y-SoccerSim (which means the players will also take part in the 2004 European Championship !), a V2 for Formula Y (our F1 game), and maybe another sport for the end of the year (it is still a secret)
GH: Is there anything else you would like to say to Gamer's Hell readers?
Reality Game: Please, do try the online games. They are not anymore simple flash or java animations, but real video games that you can play against other human beings. It's the most exciting part of the gaming future !
Our best greets to Reality-Game for the effort taken on this Q&A,