Our sister magazine, The Escapist, had an opportunity to sit with Jumpgate Evolution's Lead Producer Hermann Peterscheck, and talked about NetDevil's plans to take the franchise into the next level:
TE: So how did you guys decide on a sequel to Jumpgate as opposed to a new expansion or property?
HP: The reality is that most game companies that are started, or at least the independent ones, are just started on vision and dog work. It's a few people get together and they say, "hey, wouldn't it be great if there were a game that did this, this, this and this?" And that's really how Jumpgate was started. At that time the big game that was played was Air Warriors, but we were also big fans of Wing Commander and later on Tie Fighter, so Scott's idea was always, "Imagine that scene at the end of Return of the Jedi where all the ships jump in and there's the big fight around the Death Star, like I wanna play that!"
This was before "MMO" was even a word, so it's interesting the process when you go to pitch it to publishers and there's no mainstream MMO like World of WarCraft or EverQuest or any of that. And you say you're gonna make this game and there will be all these people playing, and they ask if you mean 32 people in a map and you say no! A thousand people!
So after Auto Assault we all sat down and wondered, well, what can we do? And, a lot of ideas got bounced around, but the reality is that a lot of the quality games come out of iteration. You'll notice that a lot of the really successful studios tend to make similar kinds of games over and over. So we talked about this love of space games and the people out there who still like playing them, so we wondered what we could do if we really spent some time and resources with that game.
Originally it was supposed to be an update, but as we worked on it more and more, especially with the visual quality coming out of the art department early on, we decided we should make a completely new game. It evolved from there, and has grown into what it now is.
Read the full interview at The Escapist.