What sort of environments will this be in? When you say 'underground,' is that literal?
Jon: It's literally an underground hideout. But from there, there are entrances to three different coliseums: the Angelic Ruins, the Gully, and Hellburbia. If you've played the whole game through, the Angelic Ruins is kind of like the alien ruins near the end, and Hellburbia is kind of like New Haven or Old Haven. They would be very similar to those things - they've got the same sort of art style.
With these three different coliseums, we wanted to make sure they followed different types of gameplay. In Hellburbia, because everything there is city combat, you have a lot of close quarters combat. The Gully is wide-open with rolling hills, so you'll be fighting at range, and the Angelic Ruins is somewhere in between.
Pandora's very desolate, do you guys have any plans to show us the parts that aren't so harsh? Does the planet have any forests at all?
Jon: I don't know! Good question! We haven't really answered that. Overall, though, Pandora is a harsh place - there's nowhere on the planet that is not harsh.
Were you planning Mad Moxxi and Dr. Ned from the beginning, or did you just come up with the whole idea from scratch after the fact?
Jon: We pretty much came up with it from scratch. We figured, we have these tools and this game, and this is what the community wants - how can we fulfill what the community is asking for so we can give it to them?
Did you learn any lessons from Zombie Island of Dr Ned that you applied to Mad Moxxi?
Jon: The level thing. We picked levels for Zombie Island where we thought most players - if not all players - would be able to jump in and find it level appropriate. But some players were left out, and it was unfortunate because it was good content. We wanted to do something for DLC2 where you can enjoy it no matter where you are in the game, no matter how far you've been. We did put the minimal level 10 on it to make sure players were far enough in the game to have a handle on their character and the game mechanics so they'd enjoy it more and have a fighting chance.
Will I need to have four other players or will it be AI, kind of like Left 4 Dead? I've been playing the game on the PC, and it's a bit more complicated to play multiplayer there.
Jon: It's players only, no AI companions - so hopefully you have some good friends and bring them along! it does alter its difficulty based on the number of players, so you won't be screwed if you're going it alone, because yeah, there are certainly some more hoops to jump through on the PC. We'll definitely be developing it for the PC, though - it's just a bit trickier, since there are so many types of PCs and only one real type of Xbox 360 or PS3.
So you've done zombies, Mad Max twice, what other post-apocalyptic pop culture references are we going to see next? I mean you could totally riff on Waterworld.
Jon: That's a really good question, I don't know - I'm not really allowed to talk about future plans, so who knows? Maybe we'll decide that the game does need to have a Waterworld.
More Kevin Costner never hurt anyone. So, the way you've been describing these, it seems like they're pretty big areas. Will the players be staying put or will they be moving around? Is the Crimson Lance ever going to show up again? What about the aliens?
Jon: We've actually had a lot of people comparing it to the arenas that are already in-game, and it's really nothing like the arenas - the gameplay is significantly different, and there's plenty of space to move around.
For example, Hellburbia is very similar to Old Haven, if you liked that - actually, my favorite part of Hellburbia is that the Crimson Lance has a specific section of the map that they've decked out all in their colors, like a mini-fortress. So, when we were playing we'd go up and run to the building and use it for shelter and cover in order to regroup and refocus. But Crimson Lance only spawn in the building, so if the next wave was the Lance, they'd spawn right on top of us - it was really, really crazy.
Will we ever get to fight that evil Claptrap?
Jon: Only time will tell. Maybe you'll get to fight him in Waterworld - who knows?