Summary: Oddly enough, article #1864 on FiringSquad is related to the American Civil War; JCal points a rifle at Adam Bryant and makes him talk about the game.
FiringSquad: First can you give us a brief history of MadMinute Games?
Adam Bryant:MadMinute Games is a true "garage game" company. The company was founded by myself and Norb Timpko, two friends with minimal experience in the gaming industry. We worked at night and on weekends for three and a half years to complete our initial project, Bull Run. Now we have been joined by a group of volunteer designers and testers, who have soldiered on to produce MadMinute's second product, Take Command 2nd Manassas. The MadMinute community is growing and as the founders we hope to someday work on the "Take Command" series full-time. Our combat engine has received excellent reviews and the AI has been lauded in numerous publications, even by the difficult to please "Grognards."
FiringSquad: How did the idea come about for making a Civil War strategy game?
Adam Bryant:I love the Civil War. It's so completely American. The Civil War was the beginning of Modern Warfare. It was truly brother against brother, friend against friend, and I find that unbelievably fascinating! Name another place in the world where, after a Civil War, the rebels were allowed to eventually place monuments on battlefields! The Rebel were not killed, imprisoned, or punished...they were told to simply go home and start rebuilding their lives. Now THAT is unique!
FiringSquad:Why do you think the US Civil War hasn't been handled in strategy games as much as, say, the WWII era?
Adam Bryant:Some people find it more difficult to understand the tactics of men standing shoulder to shoulder, out in the open, and blazing away at an opposing groupof guys standing together out in the open. The method of hiding and shooting (á la WWI & WWII) makes complete sense to the public now. People can accept the ancient style of combat (Roman Legions) with soldiers being in close ranks because there were no guns...the fighting was up close & personal. I like the flow of the fighting of the Civil War and in Napoleonics, there were muskets but they were not that accurate yet so there is not the supreme killing power that you get from an MG42.
Adam Bryant:The game is focused on the battles of the 2nd Manassas campaign. We chose this because the South was reaching it's peak and poised to mount their invasion of the North (Antietam Campaign).
FiringSquad:What are some of the more unique aspects of Take Command 2nd Manassas?
Adam Bryant:There are 48 scenarios focusing around the three most important battles of the 2nd Manassas Campaign, the scenario tree is linked and results carry over from one battle into the next. The game includes 8 Gigantic battlefield maps that are based on the historical records from the Library of Congress; and these are the most accurate American Civil War battlefield maps available in a PC game! The player has a lot of freedom and options for customization, as an example there are 3 modes of play: Historical, OpenPlay, & Custom/User Created battles. There is so much more but I don't want to go into too much detail, however I have to mention the highly acclaimed Tactical & Strategic AI which speaks for itself.
FiringSquad:What can you tell us about the graphical look of the game?
Adam Bryant:Because we have a completely free camera that allows us to look anywhere, we have to show much more of the battlefield at a time than the typical RTS games with 3/4 view. We use sprites because that allows us the freedom to show much more. Our sprites come in a Hi-Res & Low-Res modes. If you have a lot of RAM (2gig) the Hi-Res units are AWESOME. Because they are sprites and not 3D models the men are not angular/faceted...they look smooth! Our terrain is completely interactive...fences, stonewalls, etc are all objects that have importance in the game because of their defensive bonuses.
FiringSquad:How did Paradox Interactive come to be the publisher of the game?
Adam Bryant:Paradox approached us and thought we'd be a good match since they have a very strong stable of strategy games and dedicated fan base. Although our game is an RTS style game, it doesn't play like one. It's much more like chess than checkers!
FiringSquad:Are there any plans for a demo of the game to be released?
Adam Bryant:Yep. The demo is already out and can be downloaded from the link below:
FiringSquad:What is the current status of the game and when will it be released?
Adam Bryant:The game is shipping to stores on April 18th. It will also be available for direct download from Paradox.
FiringSquad:Finally is there anything else you wish to say about Take Command 2nd Manassas?
Adam Bryant:Take Command 2nd Manassas (TC2M) is a first person, real-time tactical strategy game. It was designed to be as realistic as possible and it really places you at the heart of the Civil War and forces you to Take Command! More often then not, there will be other friendly forces present in the fight with a superior commander orchestrating the whole battle. Your command will be part of this whole and you'll be in the company of familiar names like Robert E. Lee, Longstreet, "Stonewall" Jackson, Hood, Pope, Meade, Reynolds, Gibbon etc.
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