At the end of October our development team sat down to speak with the community through Discord's Stage Night feature about Beyond The Wire's journey up to now. Part of the event included a submission of community questions which we have gathered here to present to the wider community!
**Q: Why did you name your team Redstone?
**A: The name was inspired by the red-coloured sand found on the beaches of Brazil, where our creative director grew up.
Q: We have seen that the aim is to diversify the gameplay with planes and tanks - Why do you not feel that cavalry could be included on this list? It offers a potential widening of the map types and arguably more contribution to the primary gameplay on the ground than planes. What is the end-game vision?
A: The production effort for a working cavalry model is outside the scope of our team size.
Q: Is it a consideration to rework the rifles and sidearms to offer some difference in what they offer beyond ammunition capacity? Currently, with the exception of the Lebel which bolts fast and reloads slowly, they all bolt and achieve nearly the same rounds per minute which puts the British Empire factions in an unusual position when they do not have specialist trench clearing equipment/close quarters equipment. As an example, the SMLE should bolt faster, this can be compensated with a slower reload for ten rounds.
A: In the Operation III update there will be the first iteration of different characteristics which we plan to explore further with future updates.
Q: What was/is the motivation behind BTW?
A: To deliver an authentic, realistic WW1 atmosphere paired with a tactical and rewarding FPS experience.
Q: Have you considered how early you will go for maps, for example the battle of the frontiers, which may cause a different pace due to the different tactics
A: Yes, meeting engagements would be ideal but it’ll require quite a bit of production effort to get there so we can’t guarantee when that’ll be.
Q: What are some possible ways you're looking to expand the commander role?
A: We’re looking at various call-in options for the commander such as aircraft support and additional off-map artillery options
Q: When's the next soundtrack?
A: The second volume of our OST will be available in 2022
Q: Will music get a bigger role in the future to create a more dramatic scene or just mainmenu only? Red Orchestra 2 for example did a good job in building-up the music throughout the match.
A: Music will continue to be a large part of the Beyond The Wire experience. We introduced some new atmospheric music during rounds in update 0.13 which will be expanded on over future updates.
Q: Is the interior of the Chateau in Chateau-Thierry going to be added?
A: The plan is to make a portion of the Chateau interior playable.
Q: Can we expect to see Austria-Hungary and Russia?
A: Austria-Hungary will be releasing as a new faction before full release.
Q: Will there be death animations added or updated gore/ragdolls?
A: It’s planned but requires a lot of production effort so can’t guarantee when that will be.
Q: Will there be any logistic aspects added to the game?
A: Potentially but not immediately planned.
Q: When will there be a big optimization of the game?
A: Yes. Optimization is a major factor of game development and will be part of early access priorities. Once all our major systems and content is in the game we can apply full effort to this area.
Q: How do you plan on making the weapons and customization diverse enough to be interesting while still staying at least more than semi historically accurate?
A: The player will have a ‘preset’ slot that will represent different years of the war, certain cosmetic items will only be available for certain years. There’s still a decent amount of customization that can happen while respecting what year a uniform or equipment piece would have been widely used or available.
Q: Any plans to add a naval battles in future?
Q: Instead having the Scottish as sub faction, could we have them as a customization?
A: No, in order to maintain uniformity and historical authenticity in terms of the soldiers that are present on a team during a round of gameplay, any group of soldiers that has a reasonably large difference in terms of uniform or equipment will be relegated to a sub-faction.
Q: How do you foresee the multiplayer campaign system functioning? Will it involve a transition from early to late war map layers as the campaign progresses?
A: Multiplayer campaign has been shelved but yes, it was planned to transition from early war to late war.
Q: Will flamethrowers be operated by one or two people? How will they fit into the current squad system? Will you make sure to keep the range of it as far as it should be?
A: Flamethrowers will be operated by one player. Range and ammo will be dictated by gameplay needs and balance and authenticity will be secondary.
Q: Are we going to have heavy siege howitzers? like the BL 9.2 inch heavy siege howitzer or the Mörser 10 or 16?
A: Unlikely, heavier artillery will continue to be represented by commander off-map support abilities.
Q: What motivated the decision to change the bandaging and digging system
A: We noticed accessibility issues with new players accessing inventory items. Actions such as bandaging, wire cutting and building were streamlined to increase accessibility for players new to the genre
Q: There is Counter Strike logic with how you run faster with your melee out. Could you explain the reason for such a decision?
A: The reason this exists in this game and others is so that if you’re approaching a player with a melee weapon and they are moving away from you, you are able to catch up with them. If you are both constantly moving at the same speed, it results in long chases which makes it more likely the melee-user will be killed before they’re able to reach their target.
Q: When will we get bots in the game?
A: Our most roadmap shows our plan to introduce bot support at full release (1.0)
Q: What are you future plans to market the game?
A: We work alongside valve to coordinate marketing efforts on steam for each update. Beyond these in-app promotions we will be ramping up advertisement and promotion when the game comes closer to completion. Free weekends, sales and sponsored promotion marketing will all be explored
Q: Can we expect having another addition to melee combat as in weapon bashing (smacking enemies with the rifle buttstock)?
A: It’s been planned since prior to release but requires a decent amount of production effort so can’t guarantee when this will happen.
Q: We went from having a defined amount of bandages to being infinite?
A: It isn’t meaningful to limit them in our game since the pace is much quicker and there isn’t any kind of logistics system.
Q: Are there any PVE modes planned?
A: We have a gamemode planned that will include AI waves for players to defend against
Q: Any chance for getting a next gen console version?
A: There’s currently no plans to develop BTW for next gen consoles however we see that the game would make a great console game. Perhaps a future endeavor!
Q: Is there any chance the game will upgrade to UE5?
A: The development team would love to move to UE5 and there had been some preliminary research into the engine. However UE5 is still relatively new and more time is needed before we can confirm if the upgrade is possible.
Q: Are other Entente gas masks coming?
Q: When planes are added, is there going to be air to air combat only or is there going to be air to ground as well?
A: We’re expecting to offer flying capability for air-to-air combat as well as air-to-ground game modes.
Q: What about other vehicles like armored cars and trucks?
Q: Are you going to implement vote kicking in servers?
A: We have a prototype “Vote Kick” system arriving with update 0.13 which will be developed further over the following updates.
Q: Would you be more likely to add a German subfaction before a different central power faction?
A: Sub-factions for the German Empire are planned with the Jager regiments arriving in the next update.
Q: What was the hardest part about developing the customization system? Will it only get harder as more factions are released? Will sub factions have unique customization options or will they use equipment from their parent country?
A: Getting to grips with the sheer scale of the customization system has been the most difficult part with the system differentiating by faction and year. Initially only major powers will have customization options, customization for sub-factions will come over time and only if they have a variety of diverse enough uniforms/equipment to warrant customization.
Q: Will you ever add body dragging like in Squad? If not, why?
A: It’s been planned since before release but can’t guarantee when it will happen due to resource limitation.
Q: How widely are you planning to introduce flamethrowers. By this I mean will there be multiple flamethower models for each faction and different types of flamtehrowers like portable and stationary
A: Flamethrowers will be portable, they will exist as an option for teams that historically used them widely.
Q: What sort of tanks will be added, I'm guessing a Light and Heavy class for each nation? For example the FT17 and Saint Chamond for France, Whippet tank and Mark tanks for Britain and the Leichter Kampfwagen II and A7V for Germany I'm guessing?
A: Tanks and vehicles that are historically authentic will be available for the relevant teams but gameplay needs and balance may supercede authenticity in some cases.
Q: Have you considered the possibility for battles not directly related to WW1 but still happened in the WW1 timeframe
Q: Will you be able to spawn tanks in the shooting range?
Q: I would like to know what is the sourcing process for historical references and material like, easy or hard? Do you have historical advisors like professors etc? Has Discord or Reddit been any help for this? Where do you usually get your inspiration for future content?
A: Yes, we use historical advisors who usually have a network of material or additional human sources to draw from. It hasn’t been easy as a lot of specific information from world war 1 is lost or obfuscated. Some of our historical advisors have come from our Discord community.
Q: How was it for you guys making those epic trailers? And how did you do it? do you have special teams working on them?
A: Making the trailers is one of the best parts! We employ and collaborate with a cinematographer to create the trailer concept before supporting them with art and tools to use in-engine. From here the cinematographer captures any scripted scenes or any live gameplay. We also include original music from our music composer.
Q: Are we gonna have like a christmas update? Something like the 1914 christmas truce?
A: Offering time-limited events such as christmas truce is something we will take part in down the line but the team is currently concentrating on developing the content and systems for 1.0.
Q: Are there plans to make all the window models be broken?
A: The plan is to make the window glass destructible.
Q: Will you be buffing barbed wire to make it more of an obstacle? If not, why?
A: Yes we’ve been looking at ways to tweak barbed wire to make them more useful/impactful on the battlefield.
Q: Will we get different handling and other characteristics for the different pieces of field artillery?
A: It’s unlikely handling characteristics will be drastically different unless we discover a way to make it meaningful while still being fair or balanced.
Q: And will we see different shells for the field artillery such as gas, smoke and shrapnel?
A: It’s planned but due to resource limitations we can’t guarantee when that will be.
Q: Will voicelines be added for other things, such as healing, reviving, being shot, being suppressed, friendlies dying around you, being healed, etc.?
A: Our voiceline system will be expanded on however we don’t plan on pairing every character action with a voiceline
Q: Will the early war maps be updated with proper early war uniforms?
Stay posted for upcoming news and articles on Beyond The Wire. See you in the trenches!