Deus Ex 2
Harvey, I gather you're the lead designer for Ion Storm Austin on the project; what exactly does your role entail?
As project director, I work with a team of about 20 strong-willed, highly creative, super smart people. My job is never, ever boring. I try to keep a coherent vision in everyone's mind and I try to keep people (especially those with less experience) focused on finishing the game. As lead designer, I do the initial work on game units, weapons, tools and player-character powers. There are also key game programmers and designers on the team with an interest in these aspects of the game. We collaborate well--our team has amazing chemistry. I also work with the writers and mission design team on a variety of fictional issues.
Secondly, what do you believe was the main weakness, if any, that you hope to correct or add in the sequel?
I cannot look at Deus Ex any more without seeing the mistakes we made. DX2 hopes to feature much improved AI, stealth gameplay and physics. Lighting (volumetric shadows), texturing (materials) and sound propagation are also next gen. Plus we have more flexible, globally-consistent tools for problem solving. We want to give the player more interesting options for character creation and advancement (including a female player-character).