Interview: Guild Software’s twitch-based space shooter lands on OUYA with new touch controls and Tegra-optimized visuals.

By Patrick Shaw | 04-22-2013 | 4:45PM

Since launching on PC almost nine years ago, Guild Software’s flagship science-fiction-themed MMORPG, Vendetta Online, has released on numerous platforms from Windows RT to Android.

Now the twitch-based space combat game has arrived on OUYA. During an interview with NVision, Vendetta Online lead designer John Bergman explained that the reason the experience still resonates with gamers has to do with man’s fascination for what’s beyond our own planet.

“The fundamental idea of exploring an evolving galaxy and traveling through outer space is very powerful, going back to the earliest tenets of science fiction,” said Bergman, who described the series’ jump to mobile devices as a natural progression.

“It’s my responsibility to act as the steward of this universe,” he added, “and to provide windows through which people may experience it; some windows may be bigger or smaller than others, but they all look in on the same galaxy, the same shared experience, and that seems to resonate with people.”

Vendetta Online’s arrival on OUYA isn’t merely a straight port of the original game either. The developer spent time ensuring that it took advantage of the Android-based console’s unique features. The OUYA’s touch-enabled controller, for instance, allowed the team to implement a simpler navigation system for browsing in-game menus, which players can also swap through with the controller’s trigger buttons.

The game also makes use of the quad-core Tegra 3 mobile processor that powers the OUYA. Combining Tegra with the studio’s own NAOS Engine, Guild Software was able to ensure the OUYA version of Vendetta Online delivers the best possible performance — as well as “PC-grade” graphical flourishes like higher-resolution backgrounds and shader effects among other enhancements.

One of the secrets to Vendetta Online’s longevity as a franchise is its passionate community of players. The developer is committed to listening to its audience and supporting its growth by, as Bergman explained, “[adding] even more rich content to our ever-changing universe.”

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