UFO Aftermath Publisher Interview

by on 1st Aug 2003

UFO: Aftermath interview with Cenega Publishing
by Olav Lognvik for ufoaftermath.co.uk

We have been lucky enough to get the chance to interview European Cenega Publishing. As you may already know, they are to publish UFO: Aftermath in Europe.

UFOA.co.uk
Tell us a little about yourself and your position at Cenega.

Cenega (Brian):
Hi! – well I am Brian Faller, the Junior Product Manager for the UK – working from the Cenega offices just outside Monkey Island (honest – it does exist!). I have been working in the computer games industry in one form or another for the last 9 years – and been playing computer games now for over 20 years. I have been working with Cenega Publishing since shortly after they set up there UK operations.

UFOA.co.uk
Tell us a little about Cenega Publishing.

Cenega (Sonia – UK Managing Director & International Marketing Manager):

Founded in December 2002, CENEGA works in partnership with worldwide games developers to design and develop cutting edge PC entertainment for home PC, internet and LAN gaming environments.

CENEGA Publishing develops markets and distributes games in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Scandinavia, Spain, Benelux, South America, South Africa, Portugal, Greece, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Poland, Slovekia, Slovenia, Balkan regions, UAE and Israel.

UFOA.co.uk
You have recently signed a deal with Tri Synergy. What exactly did you agree on? Are they to publish all of Cenega’s games? If so, only the current games, or all games for a given period?

Cenega (Sonia):
Tri Synergy is going to be our US agent for the foreseeable future – publishing all of our current titles and new games in development in the North America region. We have a dedicated U.S. person called Andrew, who is in charge of building Cenega Publishing’s brand as well as communicating our games to then Trade and Public.

UFOA.co.uk:
What other games/software has Cenega distributed?

Cenega (Sonia):
Cenega have released a few gaming titles – Knights of the Cross and Another War, as well as some Edutainment software – Timothy, Fairy Tale and 4 leaf clovers.

Some of our Games4U budget range in Q3 2003 and Q1 2004 with Mortyr, Snajper only in Eastern Europe and The Fifth Disciple.

We are releasing two titles this year – UFO: Aftermath, and Korea: Forgotten Conflict – a squad based tactical games based on the Korean conflict. Also we have several games in development for next year, included the much anticipated Shade: Wrath of Angels and the newly signed RPG game The Roots.

UFOA.co.uk:
Why are you distributing UFO: Aftermath rather than some other game?

Cenega (Brian):
We see a lot of potential in this title becoming one of the biggest games on the PC this year. We were very impressed with the work Altar where doing on the game and we appreciated the need of many of the fans of the old X-Com titles of a successor to that series…

UFOA.co.uk:
What are your promotional plans for the game? Do you plan to advertise at all, or do you hope that word of mouth is enough?

Cenega (Brian):
We are advertising in the lead PC and games magazines in the US and the UK (the areas I am involved in) as well as SFX magazine – the worlds leading Sci-Fi and Fantasy publications. Obliviously word of mouth is also going to be a very strong tool for us as well.

UFOA.co.uk:
Have you put together any deals with the major software chains yet?

Cenega (Brian):
In the UK we have been talking to all the major retailers, both high street and online, including Game, HMV, Amazon and Play.com – all of which have started pre-order campaigns for the game. We have also organized a special campaign with Game, where customers that pre-order then buy UFO: Aftermath will receive a special limited edition poster for the game.

Sonia:
The same applies in France, US, Spain…. POS and Merchandise as well as special Edition in certain territories has been planned…in other pre-order campaigns as explained above..

UFOA.co.uk:
When are you going to get in touch with the gaming websites and fill them in on the game (adds etc.)?

Cenega (Brian):
Our PR department has been talking to websites a lot – keeping them up to date with all the goings on in Cenega – not only with UFO but with our other titles as well.

UFOA.co.uk:
What’s the release date? That would be a good thing to tell the gaming sites.

Cenega (Brian):
The game is due to be released in September this year.

UFOA.co.uk:
When will a demo be available?

Cenega (Brian):
We have signed a deal with PC Gamer with regard to the demo – they should have a cover mounted playable demo of the game in their November issue – out in September.

UFOA.co.uk:
Are you making plans/deals for selected websites to host the demo?

Cenega (Brian):
Not yet – with the agreements with PC Gamer – they will have the demo before anyone else. Hope fully the demo will be available for other media shortly after that – as for websites, the only problem could be the size of the game – might be a bit of a monster to download!

Sonia:
All the territories have plans to use that demo in one way or another. Some more details are available if needed…

UFOA.co.uk:
Are there plans for releasing other consumer goods? Will there be:
-   Strategy guides that can be bought separately?
-   Posters?
-   T-shirts/caps?
-   Plastic toys to fill our rooms?

Cenega (Brian):
We are trying to sort out a players guide for the game, as mentioned early limited edition posters will be available through Game for customers that pre-order the title. We are also designing t-shirts for UFO:Aftermath.

Sonia:
In terms of POS there will be; Small FSDUs, Posters, Dummy boxes and display boxes.
In terms of Merchandise; T-Shirts.
Special Edition added feature; a Tech Tree with some good tips on guns and a lot more details.

UFOA.co.uk:
Will there be a collector’s edition? If so, what will it contain?

Cenega (Brian):
The poster edition available though Game – the poster will be a weapons chart and tech tree for the game.

Sonia:
The above will be used as a pre-order reward if you want in the U.K. In some other territories like the Czech Republic it will be a special Edition pack….as markets are different….strategies are different too…

UFOA.co.uk:
Brian Faller of Cenega said in our E3 interview that the game will be released at the same time in the US and Europe. That’s still the plan?

Cenega (Brian):
Yes – we are working towards a worldwide launch of the game.

Sonia:
We are hoping to maintain it…

UFOA.co.uk:
Brian Faller of Cenega suggested in our E3 interview that the price would be like other games, around $40. That’s still the plan?

Cenega (Brian)
At the moment we are looking at a retail price of $49.99 in the US for UFO: Aftermath….and 29.99 GBP…

UFOA.co.uk:
Brian Faller of Cenega said in our E3 interview that Aftermath will be released in these languages: English, Czech, Polish, German, Spanish and French. Have you added any since then?

Cenega (Brian):
Not at the moment, but we are selling the games into new territories almost every day now! – so the possibility of getting new translations done is not out of the question yet.

Sonia:
Italian….Russian…

UFOA.co.uk:
Have you discussed the possibility of a sequel? Have Tri Synergy mentioned anything about this?

Cenega (Brian):
The developers (ALTAR) have tossed around a few ideas for a sequel – but nothing I can report on yet.

Sonia:
There is indeed something in the pipeline…probably for 2005…to be followed….

UFOA.co.uk:
When are you going to start promoting the game? Mike, our reporter at E3, reported that very few knew of the game’s existence. That is also the impression of the rest of the community, and it is unsettling, since the game has been in the making for a long time. We have yet to see an Aftermath add in the large gaming magazines, or at the large gaming sites….

Cenega (Brian):
In the UK we have had a good presence in the gaming magazines so far – and as the launch comes closer we have secured a lot of editor from different magazines. The US is begging target now with a lot of work being done to push the game though websites and magazines before the game is going to be launched.

Sonia:
Andrew Hoolan at TSI is our PR Manager – he can provide you with all the information. He just came back from a press tour in the West coast….

UFOA.co.uk:
Will there be any bonuses in the game box, such as posters, tech trees, complete and stand-alone manuals, etc.?

Cenega (Brian):
Only for the special offers we are running with individual retailers.

Sonia:
This is for the UK. For other territories there are adding other bonuses like Radio, T-Shirts and Sunglasses…

UFOA.co.uk:
How many CD's will UFO: Aftermath need? One install and one play?

Cenega (Brian):
At the moment we are working towards the game coming on one disk only. But it might change to two…

UFOA.co.uk:
Will you be able to pre-order UFO: Aftermath?

Cenega (Brian):
In the UK you can order the game form many websites like Amazon, play.com as well as high street retailers like HMV and Game.

Sonia:
In the U.S. you can order it from; EB, GameStop and Amazon for instance…

UFOA.co.uk:
Will UFO: Aftermath be available through popular on-line retail channels such as Amazon?

Cenega (Brian):
Yes – Amazon.co.uk are already listing the title.

Sonia:
So is Amazon.com in the US…

UFOA.co.uk:
There has been a certain demand for "fog of war" at the Aftermath boards lately. That means a dark "fog" that covers the parts of the map that haven’t been explored yet. The two first X-Com games used this. Is it something you may consider implementing into Aftermath?

Cenega (Brian):
It is something we thought about, but unfortunately if we were to add everything that we think about (like the ability to enter buildings, use vehicles and so on) the game would never come out! – we basically had to stop our selves and say we have enough now – lets work on getting this perfect instead of adding more and more elements!.

Think of it this way though – your soldiers come from military bases that still have access to satellite information – so before a mission you will be able to have the area mapped out – the only thing you will not see is the location of the enemy – because they move!

 

Add Comment Comments

Slaughter\
7 Aug 2003 - 11:07am
Slaughter
Hehe, now that IS a nice surprice! :blink:
Bastiaan\
7 Aug 2003 - 8:05am
Bastiaan
After I ordered I got a message that the price has been lowered with 10 pound to 22,95, lucky me.
Slaughter\
6 Aug 2003 - 10:44pm
Slaughter
http://shop.game.net...aspx#ukdelivery

There's your shipping rates...
Bastiaan\
6 Aug 2003 - 10:09pm
Bastiaan
Good news, than I order the game at GAME! 2,95 shipping costs I take for granted than, thanks Slaughter.

Order placed, UFO here we come :blink:
Slaughter\
6 Aug 2003 - 8:32pm
Slaughter
You get the poster as long as you pre-order from Game :blink:
Slaughter\
5 Aug 2003 - 5:02pm
Slaughter
The shipping is 1,5 pounds I believe... And Play.com has free shipping. I'll get back to you when I know about the poster.
Bastiaan\
5 Aug 2003 - 4:03pm
Bastiaan
Thanks, I will order at game online if they do, if not  I simply buy it in the shop,because of the shipping costs.
Slaughter\
5 Aug 2003 - 10:35am
Slaughter
I believe you get the poster as long as you pre-order, regardless of if you did it online or not. I'll contact Cenega and ask though, since I'm not sure.
Bastiaan\
5 Aug 2003 - 6:59am
Bastiaan
Now we have to search for the best bargain to get free posters and t-shirts. :blink:

Is game a store in the UK or do we get the free poster also when you pre-order online at game?

 

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