I had a little back and forth Q&A with Artificial Studios regarding one of their upcoming games for 2007: Monster Madness for the Xbox 360 and PC. While concurrently designing Cell Factor for PC, the Artificial Studios team is nearing the completion of Monster Madness. Read below for all the details regarding vehicles, multiplayer options, and more.

I’ll keep my comments brief, because there’s a lot covered here. So anyway, when asked about Monster Madness and how well the market might receive the game, they responded with the following: “The game doesn't play quite like any other game, even other top-down action games. Because unlike, say, a hack-&-slash action RPG, Monster Madness emphasizes ranged gun combat, and controls like a shooter with dual analog sticks. This is a similar mechanic to "Geometry Wars", but now in 3 dimensions. Being able to unload massive firepower on a veritable army of monsters with 4 players on the same screen is just plain fun. Meanwhile if players are in a competitive mood they can go up against each other in trap-filled "Arena Deathmatches", or jump into 16-player online games. I believe that shooter or action fans looking for a unique experience will have a blast with what this game has to offer.”

When asked about the vehicle selection, and use, in Monster Madness this was the response: “...vehicles are a huge part of Monster Madness. Think "Metal Slug"-- how tanks and airplanes in a game like that are useful as a temporary advantage against the overwhelming onslaught of enemies. It's similar in Monster Madness, where you'll find vehicles in the environment that you can hop into to start tearing up the monsters with built-in weaponry.”

They continued on to say “Some vehicles support up to 4 players, with different seats for different uses, while others only can fit one player, allowing each player can simultaneously drive their own vehicle. The vehicles run the gamut from cars to mini ATV's, to UFO's, mechs, boats, and hovercraft. In competitive multiplayer, vehicles are present in some of the 4-player deathmatch arenas, as well as all of the 16-player team-battle stages. As you can probably imagine, laying siege to the enemy team's base with a squad of death-laser equipped UFOs is quite amusing!”

Regarding stage designs and multiple routes, they mentioned... ”Bosses will be a HUGE part of a co-op game, especially when they require the combined effort of every player to bring them down. As such, we've spent a lot of time working on the major boss fights in Monster Madness, and each one has a unique "hook" to it. While all bosses require some firepower to bring down, practically none of them are straightforward "shoot & dodge" affairs. Many of them require you to destroy some form of protection before they can be damaged, or fight them in vehicles, or with unique items. Most are also multi-staged, so just when you think you've beaten them, they're ready for another round!”

Monster Madness is scheduled for release in the early part of 2007 for the Xbox 360 and PC. You can also read the rest of the interview here, or visit Artificial Studios to get more insight into the game.

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