The Official PlayStation Podcast made its debut on the virtual airwaves last Friday – though technically it’s just their first release under that name! And in its inaugural episode under the Official PlayStation Podcast banner, Illfonic’s CEO Charles Brungardt and Chief Creative Officer Jared Gerritzen join to talk about how Illfonic and Predator: Hunting Ground is doing!
The discussion starts at around 15:30 minutes in and lasts for 10 minutes. The pair confirm that Illfonic is working on the game from home and keeping safe. They felt they had an advantage in working like this due their experience in communicating and working from three different Illfonic studios anyway.
They confirmed that further balancing has been worked on following the feedback from the trial weekend. They specifically mentioned complaints that the Predator was underpowered (though they did find in their backend data that in terms of overall wins, the Fireteams and Predators were very nearly split down the middle). The difficulties with matchmaking were also discussed, and they commented on how the trial was incredibly useful in fixing that prior to launch.
It was confirmed that the trial build was already an older build that was 6 weeks old, and that some issues identified during the trial had already been fixed but not rushed into the trial build at the last minute. They also revealed that Hunting Grounds had gone gold ahead of its release on the 24th of April.
While they’re focused on making the launch version of the game as good as possible, Illfonic also discussed the importance of the post-launch support and following the feedback from player experiences to further refine the game.
On the same topic, lead designer Jordan Mathewson also recently spoke to ComicBook.com about the feedback from the trial weekend and how they were using that information going forward.
“I think the biggest things that we took away from it were some balance,” said Mathewson when asked about the response to the Hunting Grounds trial. “A lot of it was coming down to, ‘This is how we’ve been playing for quite a while now, I really want to see what happens when other people get it.’ Sure enough, there were some balance things that we took into account, and we’ve been making some adjustments. And a lot of usability and other feedback that came back was really great. So, we’re doing everything we can to address those things.”
When asked for specifics on the game’s balance, Mathewson referenced the arsenal of weapons available to the Fireteam and the Predator. He said IllFonic chose specific weapons to be used in the trial that the developers had lingering questions about, and seeing players use them helped answer final questions regarding which ones were “a little bit too much.” He mentioned the grenade launcher which dominated Fireteam loadouts once it was unlocked as one example.”
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