This edited chat-log contains a plethora of facts and information in regard to C&C Generals. The chat took place in an IRC session in the community chatroom with well-known community-member 'TheVoice', who, on the 21st of May 2003, attended a special Generals Dinner at E3 - in which a demo of the game was shown and plenty of information revealed. Thanks go to Steve for recording the chat, TheVoice for answering all of the questions and my patience for editing it all.
Jean: Tell us about the Editor.
TheVoice: The editor works similarly to fa2 in terms of textures and things - you get squares of different textures and put them down on the map. To make it look somewhat decent theres a lot of smoothing tools for raising and lowering terrain.
Striker: Will there be any "intergated" mod support in the game? - Like, enabling/disabling mods, like Renegade has a similar feature..Change skins perhaps (unit skins)..etc
TheVoice: I'm not 100% sure about skinning. I think the models are brought into the game textured. I'll have to ask harvard but the game is not really finished enough to mod alot.
Jamie: Can you give us a decription of the Quad Cannon, Rocket Buggy and Suicide Car?
TheVoice: Quad cannon was pretty powerful. The buggies were impressive in their speed, power and range. Suicide car I didn't see.
jos: Did you see the seismic tank?
TheVoice: It was taken out of the game.
Jamie: Has there been anymore new features seen in the game - as in new ones that we dont know about?
TheVoice: Well heres an interesting feature: each side builds its base and gathers money differently. Lets say you attack the GLA and destroy their base, you will see lots of holes in the ground. If you don't keep shooting at the area people will come back and rebuild the base.
jos: Did you see the angry mob from the GLA?
TheVoice: I didn't see the angry mob. The US has the bulldozer and the Chinese have men.
jos: What units did you see?
TheVoice: I saw the chinese army, the crusader tank, flame tank, rocket buggy, tunnel system, apaches, migs, and a lot of cool special weapons: 6 special weapons per side.
jos: What kind of special weapons?
TheVoice: I saw the napalm attack which is done by the chinese - they use about 5 migs to kill. A lot of the sides have specials but they aren't like the nuke or weather storm. They are more centeralized to the side thats using them and in terms of area of effect. I also saw the nuke in action which was nice. Cool sidenote: for air to air combat, planes will dogfight.
As for the GLA they have no airforce though. If i were to compare each side to something you know, I'd say the GLA was like NOD with less money, US is like GDI with faster units, and Chinese are like the Soviets in ra2.
TheVoice: When the game is going to come out?
Jason_Knight: Is there going to be any sea warfare, or water units?
TheVoice: Unfortunately there are no boats in the game. In missions there will be support craft and things - and maybe a shore bombardment as a special.
jos: What is the use of upcrading buildings?
Upgrading allows you the use of specials. Each general per side has 2 specials - regular infantry this time: if you upgrade the barracks they can fire grenades which can help in destroying tanks etc. Online play will consist of many tournaments. Generals will allow people to host their own personal tourneys with as many people as they like. Co-op mode will also be expanded to include more missions and more scripted situations - theres going to be an 8 player maximum per game.
TheKiller: Why the name Generals?
It was named generals due to the different geneals you can become for each side. Each side has three generals. As an example, the US has a airforce, special forces, and an army general each with their own specials so you become that general and use your strengths.
jos: Will that enable anything that other generals dont have?
TheVoice: Definitely. Each general has a special unit and 2 special attacks.
Striker: Did you get to know the Specials (or Generals) for the other 2 sides?
TheVoice: Well I'm sure if you play as them you will know, but the game will not tell you.
TheKiller: Why is it under the C&C franchise?
TheVoice: In the eyes of the team C&C is a style of gameplay and not about storylines. Fun, fast, and exciting gameplay is what sets C&C apart and its also one hell of a selling point as you all know.
jos: Why was the seismethic tank removed?
TheVoice: Not sure it was just removed. Things like that happen.
jos: What replaced it?
TheVoice: Nothing replaced it. A lot of units are still undecided.
jos: What about infantry? - I haven't seen a lot of infantry.. tell us something about infantry.
TheVoice: In the words of one of the games engineers, as he was drunk at the time, infantry are "little people that die a lot".
TheKiller: How have the team managed to avoid the three sides creating unbalanced gameplay?
TheVoice: Balancing hasn't started yet but the team has learned a lot from emperor and ra2 so I don't see balancing as an issue.
WWBot: Will the Generals map editor also be usable for Renegade as well?
TheVoice: Generals uses a very, very small amount of renegade coding. No you cannot use the "world editor" for rengade.
Jamie: What are your views on the game, do you think it will be a big success?
TheVoice: I have no doubt in my mind. The gameplay is solid, the graphics kill anything out there and the effects are just amazing.
WWBot: Will Generals make use of the more advanced features in cards such as the GeForce 3 and 4?
TheKiller: Will there be a collectors edition?
TheVoice: Nope, although there could be. Its more of a marketing issue but from what I get its not important.
Shady: What is the funnest side to play as?
TheVoice: I think I'd have to play as them to see. GLA has the most fun in terms of crazy units - you guys remember the propaganda blimp?
WWBot: How does Generals compare to other RTS games on the market now in your opinion?
TheVoice: Superior engine, varied strategies, faster gameplay. You guys know what ea pacific can do.
jos: Will people be able to make maps?
TheVoice: Yes, you can make lot of maps. anyone can make them too. The editor is very simple - photoshop meets fa2. In the words of Delphi - "If i can make a map in 30 minutes imagine what people like deezire and RVMECH can do".
Shady: Any idea when the official generals site will be up?
TheVoice: Later this week or next week. Delphi is working on 16 new screenshots for you guys.
jos: Will there be a demo of generals ?
TheVoice: Not sure about a demo. There might be a closed beta, for special people.
Java_monk: The game looks mighty purty, will it require a high end system?
TheVoice: 500-700 mhz, 128mb, 16mb 3d card.
jos: If US and China have planes but GLA doesn't then what does GLA have to counter this?
TheVoice: Anti air and the fact that they can rebuild a destroyed base in about a minute. They come out of these little tunnels under their base and start building - so killing the bildings isn't enough.
jos: Will there be a way for US or China to discover the underground systems of GLA?
adam: Any idea how?
TheVoice: The underground systems can be seen from the top of the ground - as in the tunnel systems that they use to move infantry. As a special for one of the generals for China
you can build a tunnel system in the enemy base.
Jamie: Whats the AI like, Hard or just like ra2?
TheVoice: Can't give you an answer on AI.
jos: Will a nuke destroy the underground tunnels?
TheVoice: Not sure on the nuke - the animation for it is cool though, I know that for sure.
adam: When building/traversing the tunnels will the screen go 'underground' or will the view stay above ground?
TheVoice: Everything is above ground. Theres a little tunnel entrance and exit.
jos: Can US or China capture an abandoned tunnel?
TheVoice: On the map you can only destroy not capture - there are no engineers in the game so no engineer rushing guys, sorry :(
jos: Will you beable to rotate around buildings like in ebfd?
TheVoice: Yup. You can also zoom in as much as you want but they will probably set it before the game comes out. If you played the game without using the cameras you'd still be fine.
adam: Will the buildings 'load' in the sidebar or will you see them being made real time?
TheVoice: Buildings are made real time in the game and they show a percentage of donness. Buildings are built not "placed" with the bulldozer. You can also build anywhere :)
adam: Will there be neutral buidlings like oil derricks etc like in RA2/YR?
TheVoice: There are 5 neutral buildings but I don't have details on them.
jos: How will the building units and buildings work, do you have to click a certain building to build a certain unit?
TheVoice: Yes. Cool sidenote: One of the chinese specials is the neutron bomb.
adam: Will the GLA tunnels be built by the bulldozers or a special unit?
TheVoice: It destorys everything where it hits and radiation spreads - any unit caught in it becomes sideless so you have to rush to go get the units and bring them to your side. Not sure about tunnel building.
jos: Will there be spys in the game? If yes what can they do?
TheVoice: Hackers. If you have a hacker and it sits there it will steal money for you. A little radar dish comes up and it goes online. He can also shut down base defenses and things like that. As for infantry, everyone's favorite sniper comes back.
adam: Do you just destroy the building he's in then?
TheVoice: If you put it in a building, it can shoot people without anyone seeing it. Not sure on the exact specifics of the hacker. The US Pathfinder is like a special forces unit - it can camo itself and pretty much do anything - c4 and the like. Also, each side has a hero unit like YR.
adam: What types of multiplay will there be?
TheVoice: Limited. So far I know there is just battle with up to 8 players and an enhanced co-op. People can also design their own missions and co-op missions and people can hold their own personal tournaments.