The background to why I developed the FCSP-concept
First things first! I have no programmer background or other coding experience; basically I’m a design focused concept guy who’s on casual hobby level tries to manifest the game experience visions that has arose when playing different games…
The Frontline Commander Strategy Playground-mission concept, FCSP, is an test to sum up some of the best gaming experiences I got when playing different military games through the years. For example I did like Battlefield up to version 3 (after that to much arcade) but I thought the concept of capturing flags was a bit to generic and repetitive; I wished more “adventure”.
The first Battlefield game was released 2002 and a bit before that I found the reality oriented approach to military gaming via a game called “Infiltration” which was built on the Unreal engine. This game engine had a quite user friendly map and mission editor (as said I’m no coder/programmer) which draw me into create my first enthusiast hobby content to computer games. I made some maps with missions and released on the small but very live-full and supporting community and also created a special site for this: Zirb Action. (At this site I also say something about my view on the moral perspective on playing military games and basically I still have similar thoughts as presented there).
I did like the sandbox world of Far Cry (2004) but to few seemed to play on the online servers and the missions seemed to be generic too. Parallel to this I also enjoyed some flight simulators and perhaps one of the first from the ’90s – A10 Cuba (link leads to wiki-page) was the best in many aspects. For example it had an simple but quite well working damage simulation which added to the challenge level in an interesting way. Even if this was one of the first games I played I remember I thought it would be interesting if also the ground was accessible first person shooter-style so for example adventurous getting home problems after being shot down could have been possible…
“I felt that Arma seemed to have the potential to combine all the good in all those games…”
Initially I was introduced to one of the first titles in the Arma series by a gamer friend – Ming Leung (who also is a graphic designer in Göteborg, Sweden as me. Thanks for the Arma-introduction Ming! 😉 ) but at the time the game seemed “immature” and clunky. Then about 2012 I re-discovered Arma, more particularly Arma 2 and shortly after Arma 3 was released. Now I felt that Arma seemed to have the potential to combine all the good in all those games. After playing a while both online and single player missions I got a feeling what I would like to test if I made my own missions that I slowly -step by step – started to work on…
“The huge environments and realism aspect of Arma is great but certain common Arma experiences isn’t really realism; instead a feeling of frustration can be the experience…”
The huge environments and realism aspect of Arma is great but certain common Arma experiences isn’t really realism; instead a feeling of frustration can be the experience. The construction of online mission often lead to very long phases of just setting things up; in short it takes time before the adventure starts and when it actually starts the rounds can be too long; to many hours to sync with real life stuff. With this in mind I started to sketch on simple missions that had the qualities I was after…
As the concept name indicates the commander part is central. Since we are talking about a frontline commander you got both the first person shooter-experience and the big-picture-strategic-experience at the same time. As commander over an army you have the resources; here you also got the huge strategic picture and feeling for the wholeness, the strategic decisions how to plan the missions out.
“Basically I wished to create missions where the ADVENTURE are central […] also that the missions could be completed in reasonable short time…”
Basically I wished to create missions where the ADVENTURE are central but things as strategy and clear mission goals still was important. Also that the missions could be completed in reasonable short time but still creates a feeling of that “adventure”; A reasonable unpredictable world where many things can happen and force you to active problem solving.
As stated before I have no programmer background or other coding experience (except some html/css), but with help from the Bohemia Community in general and in particular SaOk, the creator of epic ‘Whole Lotta Altis’ at least some of the visions is incorporated. I say some, because of my coding limitations I had only scratched on the surface what I would do if the coding part was not that huge obstacle. In spite of that I think the concept can deliver lot of fun as it is; some sort of repetitive adventure using limited of time each round as a mix of Battlefield-directness/playability and the Arma reality smartness… Something like that…. 😉