As a huge fan of all things “shoot’em up” it makes me sad to see the genre fade into obscurity with only a few titles here and there over the years. Which is why i was more than ecstatic to see the announcement trailer for indie developer Boss Baddie’s new game Big Sky Infinity. I couldn’t wait to learn more. So much, in fact, I sent a few questions to the developers, and they graciously replied. Below are those very same questions answered by none other than James Whitehead himself, owner and lead developer of the Boss Baddie team.
1. How would you describe the overall concept of Big Sky Infinity?
It’s a fast-paced twin stick shooter with dynamic gameplay that adapts to player performance – you’ll never play the same game twice! It’s full of huge bosses, intense events, hordes of enemies and a cheeky cockney narrator!
2. What do you feel are the most significant aspects that set this game apart from other titles within the “Shoot’em Up” genre?
It’s not just about shooting, it’s also about drilling too! You have to evade masses of laser fire and always be ready to hit the drill button so you don’t smash into a fast-moving meteor or planet. It borrows bits from different shooter genres, all wrapped in a pretty 1080p bow.
3. What would you say are the most important ways Big Sky Infinity has changed from its predecessor, Really Big Sky?
There’s a whole new look thanks to the guys at VooFoo, it looks amazing in full HD, and the PS3 version supports stereoscopic 3D too! We’ve got trophies, online highscores, new content such as bosses and enemies, a fantastic new soundtrack and voice over – which is around 4 times bigger than the original Really Big Sky script. There’s a really cool new endurance style mode too, which has a really interesting score method!
There’s a great async multiplayer mode on the Vita. You can set a challenge, like getting so many bad guy kills or flying the longest distance, and send that challenge to a friend or to a random stranger. We had a load of fun playing this during development! It’s my favorite new feature.
4. Can you explain the customization system?
As you play through the game you collect starbits, these little bits of blue currency can be spent on upgrading your ship. There are loads of categories to upgrade, and it’s a gradual upgrade system so even if you have almost no starbits left you might be able to slightly power up one weapon. After you’ve maxed out a weapon you can turn it into an ultra weapon, which is when you can really turn the tables around!
5. How does the multiplayer aspect add to the overall experience of the game?
On the PS3 you’re able to play with 3 buddies on the same screen, and the more support you have the tougher the enemies get! But you can also fight back by flying near to each other, which powers up your weapons.
On the PS Vita we have an async multiplayer mode, where you and a friend will challenge each other to beat highscores, to get the highest multiplier, to destroy the most enemies. Or you can challenge the ENTIRE universe (a randomly selected player!). We had a lot of fun playing this in development!
6. What has your experience been developing for console in comparison to pc and what would you consider your biggest challenges being developing Big Sky Infinity overall?
In many ways consoles are easier. On the PC side we had to consider slower machines, and sometimes some hardware wouldn’t work correctly. Consoles “one size fits all” approach means we can focus purely on the game and not worry about incompatibilities.
Consoles gives us some great opportunities to do cool things such as cloud saving, asynchronous multi-player, etc… that would be really time-consuming to code on PC, consoles support these things straight out of the box.
7. Are there any plans to release on other platforms such as PC and XBLA?
No plans yet, but you can pick up the prequel (Really Big Sky) on Steam right now!
8. When can we expect to see Big Sky Infinity hit stores?
It will be available to download from the PlayStation Network Store on 11th December in the US and 12th December in Europe.
Well there you have it folks. Big thanks to the Boss Baddie team for their time. It won’t be long until we can grace the starry skies of Big Sky Infinity. If you’d like to learn more here is a link to the official website.