'Dishonored' co-directors talk stealth, missions, and chaos in Reddit AMA thread

The co-directors of Arkane Studio's Dishonored took to Reddit today to answer questions about the game, Bethesda, and the games industry.

The co-directors of Arkane Studio's Dishonored took to Reddit today to answer questions about the game, Bethesda, and the games industry.

In a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) thread that exceeded 600 comments, Harvey Smith and Raphael Colantonio of Arkane Studios answered hundreds of questions, ranging from how missions would operate in Dishonored, through to what their favorite games are and how they got into the games industry.

When asked about stealth and missions in Dishonored, Smith explained that it is possible to complete the game without killing anyone, and a zero-kill game was one of the development team's goals. Smith also said that the game is 12-24 hours in length, with the variance in time directly related to how the player chooses to play, whether they undertake all the side quests and how much time they spend exploring.

Smith and Colantonio also took the time to explain how the missions in Dishonored will be structured.

"Dishonored is not open world, it is mission based," they wrote. "Each mission is built as a mini sandbox, so the missions are open and offer several paths and approaches. If you like Life of the Party in Thief 2, you will like the Dishonored missions in terms of depth, combination, etc. Our missions follow the model of games like Thief or Deus Ex. It's part of our core values and our design lead – the amazing Christophe Carrier, who worked on Arx Fatalis – really shares those values."

"If you like Life of the Party in Thief 2, you will like the Dishonored missions in terms of depth, combination ..."

The co-directors also fielded questions about how players' actions and Chaos will affect the world and narrative, saying that part of it is pre-scripted and the other part is dynamic.

"For most players, the effects over the course of the game will be fairly subtle," Harvey said of the impact of Chaos. "The mission checks the current level of Chaos so far and the following can happen: more pools of rats, more people with the plague (weepers), lines of dialogue/attitudes changed, additional scenes here and there, and different endgames.

"Things like the rat pools feel like 'mid level gameplay' ... Lines of dialogue are obviously a scripted reaction. There are two main endings, but each has variations based on who lived or died. Some of the Chaos effects are meant to be 'felt' more than overtly identified as they're happening.

"It's a weird hybrid system. We tried to make it matter some in terms of making the experience your own, but we also didn't want it dominating the game. We're hopeful people will like the game."

The thread was live from 3:00 p.m to 7:00p.m. EST and readers were invited to ask the co-directors anything they wished. The full thread can be viewed here.

Earlier this month, Polygon conducted in-depth interviews with both Harvey Smith and Raphael Colantonio. We also checked out Dishonored at this year's E3. You can read our impressions here.

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