NYCC ’11 – Trion Worlds and SyFy Introduce ‘Defiance’

Trion continues their ambitious attack on traditional MMOs.

Mike Whiteby Mike White

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During their only appearance at Comic Con 2011, Trion Worlds shed some light on their upcoming project, Defiance. In an attempt to provide an experience for gamers that has never been done before, the Syfy channel has paired up with game developer Trion Worlds to create what they’re calling a cross-media experience.

Games based off of movies and television are not new. The same holds true for movies and TV based on video games. Where Defiance stands out is that the Syfy television series and MMO third-person shooter with RPG elements from Trion are being developed at the same time and with each other in mind. Anything that one creates can be emulated by the other. The two companies promise that this will be a cohesive universe, giving players and viewers a deeper connection to the franchise.

Set in the future around the San Francisco Bay area, Defiance tells the story of humans and aliens interacting in a world torn by decades of war. The developers assured us that this won’t exactly be post-apocalyptic in story or style. Players and viewers won’t be limited to seeing everything in shades of brown. The screenshots and trailers for Defiance highlight a vibrant, unique style.

The game is being developed simultaneously for the PC, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. Trion couldn’t offer technical details, but claim they have the tools to program the game for all three platforms without sacrificing functionality between them. Other games and programs have failed in the past to provide equally high quality when developed for one platform and ported to another. For Defiance, they claim that won’t be the case.

There will be slight separation between the three. For obvious reasons, the user interface of a PC game and a platform game aren’t mutually effective.

For the show Defiance, Syfy turned to writer Rockne O’Bannon, known for his work on Alien Nation, Warehouse 13, Farscape and SeaQuest: DSV. O’Bannon brings an immediate credibility for Syfy fans.

Though no representatives from Syfy were at the panel to comment, Trion promised that their game would be capable of sustaining itself if the show should stop for any reason. That’s why they have to make the game enjoyable first, then worry about the rest.

The development phase is still in its earliest stages. There is no release window or any talks about free to play versus a subscription model. Currently, the developers are only focused on PvE aspects of the game to keep the community active and working together, though they did not rule out the possibility of PvP being a part of the title.

What is clear so far is that the two companies are committed to creating an experience and connection that viewers and gamers haven’t had in the past.