Interview: Bringing Two Point Campus to the Nintendo Switch
Two Point Campus will be released later this year and it’s taking everything the team learned from Two Point Hospital and taking it to another level. We’ve got a full preview of the game here, we got to go hands on with the PC version of the game. But we just had to ask about the Switch version, we chatted to Ben Huskins, the Design Director of Two Point Campus about it.
We also got to go hands on with the game, and have a preview here.
The dev team of Two Point Campus had the ambition to release on all platforms on day one. How did that impact the design process of the game, given Two Point Hospital was built for PC first and then consoles second?
BH: We learnt a lot from bringing Two Point Hospital to consoles – we spent a lot of time thinking about how a simulation game should feel when played with a controller, and how to tackle the various technical challenges. That’s given us a great sense of what works, and what doesn’t work, across all the platforms. With Two Point Campus, we’ve actually built the game from scratch with this in mind. The controls, the menus, everything has been designed to work nicely on consoles.
The Switch is unique, as it allows for players to enjoy their game of choice in any location they choose. Were there any specific challenges, with bringing a game that offers up lots of screens of data, to the platform?
BH: We’ve had to bear this in mind with everything we’ve designed. There’s a lot going on in the game, but our philosophy has always been to keep the game simple on the surface, but allow more advanced players to dive into the nuances of the simulation. In general we try to keep you in the world as much as possible. You spend a lot of time building rooms, placing items, following characters, and you can access the most important information by selecting things in the world. But we also provide lots of shortcuts in every menu so it’s easy to delve deeper, and find out exactly how well your campus is doing. Each menu is divided into bite size chunks, and it’s quick to navigate through the tabs and lists to find out what you want to know. It feels very natural on Switch.
Is there any touch screen functionality on the Switch version, for when players are in handheld mode?
BH: We don’t support touch input, but we’re really happy with the controls on Switch. It’s really easy to build your campus and navigate the menus. We’ve designed all of the menus with handheld mode in mind, so it’s easy to read and pick out the information you need.
Switch games generally run at a lower frame rate, if not lower resolution, in order to run smoothly on the platform. How does the game run on Switch?
BH: The plan from the beginning has been to release the game across multiple platforms, so we’ve designed the whole thing with Switch in mind. Our experience bringing Two Point Hospital to consoles really helped here too. We’ve built Campus from the ground up to make sure we can optimise it for all the platforms. We’re also planning to keep updating the game with more content after launch, so we’ll keep optimising to allow people to build even larger campuses!
Sim games generally offer up modes like sandbox, are there any new modes or ways to play being brought into the series with Campus?
BH: We’ve got sandbox mode, with a whole range of different settings to play with. That’s great for people who just want to be creative and build their dream campus, or for people who want to create a real challenge for themselves. And of course there’s the classic career mode where you progress around Two Point County earning stars for each campus. But we’re also really interested in other ways of playing the game, and we’re keen to keep updating the game once it’s out there, so watch this space!
A long shot question, but will the Switch version support amiibo?
BH: Sadly not!
Is there anything you would like to say to Switch gamers, about Two Point Campus?
BH: I’m really looking forward to seeing how people use all of the new creative tools we’ve developed for Campus. It’s really easy to build up your campus, customise your rooms, decorate the campus grounds, and rearrange everything to experiment with different layouts. You decide which courses to run, and that shapes your student population. So everyone ends up with a campus that’s unique to them. Doing this on a Switch feels great, and handheld mode makes it really easy to show off your campus to friends.
Two Point Campus is out on 9th August, it was originally due out in May but a delay of three months was announced the same time as this preview.