The Few is an RTS due later this year for iOS, PC & Mac set during World War II. Specifically, it concentrates on the Battle of Britain – a crucial point in the war often ignored by games set in the era. The game is being developed by Polish indie house BlackMoon Design – with our very own Grumpy Gurevitz helping out on sound duties via his 2002 Studios. With the fact that no other videogame in history can possibly match the quality of the sound work established (apart from all the others Steven has worked and will work on), Robert Podgorski from BlackMoon told us some more about other areas of the game.
“The idea to create a thrilling aerial strategy was there with me since I first played Achtung Spitfire! and Aces over Europe when I was a kid.” he says. “I would say that nostalgic feelings about playing games as a kid is the base for all our games in BlackMoon. [The Few] has a few different levels really. First – you need to plan what you would need to fight the war. There is a limited production capability and this is going to be a very hard choice pretty early on in the game – will you produce more planes, build new ground installations or maybe repair what you already have?
The next level is the actual commanding of RAF Fighter Command. The player can control where squadrons go, control an existing squadron, create new ones, train new pilots and so on. The last level of the game is when your unit is in the contact with the enemy.” So dogfights are played out automatically? “You can let the game auto-resolve the battles, but it’s much more fun to go into the ‘air fight’ mode where you can command every plane on your own.”
The market may not be heaving with Battle of Britain products, but WWII long ago became an overfamiliar setting for videogames. Doesn’t this mean The Few will struggle to stand out?
“I think the WWII setting is overfamilliar for a reason – there are many people deeply interested in this period of history. Actually – I think if our game had a fantasy or sci-fi setting – that will make it harder for us to grab some attention. We are trying to be as historically accurate as possible in the game. So – the Spitfire AI is pretty much based on the actual guide for RAF cadets at the time.”
So Historical accuracy is important in The Few?
“Our main goal was to make the game that is fun to play.” Robert assures us. “We obviously had to simplify a lot of things, but we followed the historical path everywhere when it was possible.”
The Few’s Facebook page has seen a lot of interaction between the developers and the still-growing fanbase…
“Pros – there are many people out there that are already passionate about our game. The feedback we get from the community really gets us going. I don’t see any cons about informing the community about the development process and asking for their feedback each time we hit the wall during game design.”
Will the wide diversity of nationalities in the Battle of Britain be represented in The Few, and if so, how?
“Yes – the player will have British, Polish, Czech, and New Zealand squadrons. Each squadron will have its own log with the squadron history and new pilots in each squadron will have names generated accordingly to their nationality.”
After being told that The Few will be sold as one complete package, we asked the boring yet inevitable question; any plans for a console release?
“We’re starting with PC/Mac release and iOS/Android release some time after. If the game performs well on those platforms we’ll definitely push it forward (there’s already a full drawer of further ideas – porting the game to consoles is among them).”
If you’re interested, the game’s Facebook page is currently the best place to go to keep up to date with development; a rough ‘September’ release is currently pencilled in. Below is a video featuring footage from an early build taken last year: