Gamers to experience Roman York in new videogame

A scene from the game Ryse Son of Rome. Image courtesy of Crytek and Microsoft Studios.

A scene from the game Ryse Son of Rome. Image courtesy of Crytek and Microsoft Studios.

A scene from the game Ryse Son of Rome. Image courtesy of Crytek and Microsoft Studios.

First published in News
Last updated

GAMERS can take to the streets of ancient York, thanks to a blockbuster release.

Ryse: Son Of Rome allows players to take control of a General during the Roman occupation of Britain, along with his legion, and has received largely positive reviews since it was released at the end of last year.

The developers, Crytek, are based in Germany, and worked with Microsoft Studios to create the game. They told The Press the idea of using York as a major location in the game had been part of the plan from the very beginning of development, as a well-known outpost of the Roman Empire.

Patrick Esteves, design director on Ryse, said: "We picked York as a location for the game because of its historical significance. It was an important garrison city and the most northern part the Romans had control over in all of Britain at that time. The juxtaposition of the Britons attacking a Roman colony was something that made that mission interesting for us."

Patrick said it could be argued that the York levels make up the most important mission in the game, which starts when the hero, Marius Titus, goes to the city, and is sent on a rescue mission beyond the wall.

He said: "When he returns, the Britons lay siege to the city in order to reclaim what was theirs. York ties well into Ryse as it marks a pivotal point in the story. The player learns that the Romans are not always on the good side as they are invaders in another country. I can’t describe the complete mission without spoiling the whole game though."

Although the landmarks in the city may not match York exactly, Patrick said the digital city was inspired by the real city's appearance.

He said: "When designing York we wanted the city to look like it was built by Romans and show Roman architecture, but you can also see the 'dirtiness' you would expect in an occupied garrison city. We modeled the buildings after the walls and fortresses that you can find in York today to make the architecture and textures look authentic."

Comments (2)

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10:49am Wed 30 Jul 14

Greganor says...

As the article mentions briefly in the opening paragraph, this game was released at the same time as the console in November 2013. If this was a story pursued by the Press, I have no idea why.

The games industry and market is fast paced, filled with previews and swiftly published post-release reviews to stimulate the market. Nearly 9 months on, the only reference to this game currently being made is how it has failed to stimulate adequate sales to keep the developers, Crytek, from entering a financial crisis.

The game itself is mediocre, short and as suggested by the design director, simply used York as a place name for a generically designed mission area, with no features identifiable as being within or about York. If it hadn't said York, in text, on the screen at the opening of the mission, no one would be any the wiser, nor would they probably care.

If Crytek are offering up this "interview" as news, it probably reflects their need to further promote a game that has been side-lined by most, both gamers and critics.

On the other hand, someone at the Press might have suddenly caught wind of this small reference to York in a game and thought they'd run with it. I guess that would indicate a slow news day.
As the article mentions briefly in the opening paragraph, this game was released at the same time as the console in November 2013. If this was a story pursued by the Press, I have no idea why. The games industry and market is fast paced, filled with previews and swiftly published post-release reviews to stimulate the market. Nearly 9 months on, the only reference to this game currently being made is how it has failed to stimulate adequate sales to keep the developers, Crytek, from entering a financial crisis. The game itself is mediocre, short and as suggested by the design director, simply used York as a place name for a generically designed mission area, with no features identifiable as being within or about York. If it hadn't said York, in text, on the screen at the opening of the mission, no one would be any the wiser, nor would they probably care. If Crytek are offering up this "interview" as news, it probably reflects their need to further promote a game that has been side-lined by most, both gamers and critics. On the other hand, someone at the Press might have suddenly caught wind of this small reference to York in a game and thought they'd run with it. I guess that would indicate a slow news day. Greganor
  • Score: 10

10:09pm Wed 30 Jul 14

Silver says...

Greganor wrote:
As the article mentions briefly in the opening paragraph, this game was released at the same time as the console in November 2013. If this was a story pursued by the Press, I have no idea why.

The games industry and market is fast paced, filled with previews and swiftly published post-release reviews to stimulate the market. Nearly 9 months on, the only reference to this game currently being made is how it has failed to stimulate adequate sales to keep the developers, Crytek, from entering a financial crisis.

The game itself is mediocre, short and as suggested by the design director, simply used York as a place name for a generically designed mission area, with no features identifiable as being within or about York. If it hadn't said York, in text, on the screen at the opening of the mission, no one would be any the wiser, nor would they probably care.

If Crytek are offering up this "interview" as news, it probably reflects their need to further promote a game that has been side-lined by most, both gamers and critics.

On the other hand, someone at the Press might have suddenly caught wind of this small reference to York in a game and thought they'd run with it. I guess that would indicate a slow news day.
Think you've hit the nail right on the head there. Besides it's not the first time York has been in a video game it was featured in Resistance: Fall of Man on the PlayStation 3 with the first three levels being in York, it didn't get a mention in the local press which tells us that The Press play only on Xboxes.
[quote][p][bold]Greganor[/bold] wrote: As the article mentions briefly in the opening paragraph, this game was released at the same time as the console in November 2013. If this was a story pursued by the Press, I have no idea why. The games industry and market is fast paced, filled with previews and swiftly published post-release reviews to stimulate the market. Nearly 9 months on, the only reference to this game currently being made is how it has failed to stimulate adequate sales to keep the developers, Crytek, from entering a financial crisis. The game itself is mediocre, short and as suggested by the design director, simply used York as a place name for a generically designed mission area, with no features identifiable as being within or about York. If it hadn't said York, in text, on the screen at the opening of the mission, no one would be any the wiser, nor would they probably care. If Crytek are offering up this "interview" as news, it probably reflects their need to further promote a game that has been side-lined by most, both gamers and critics. On the other hand, someone at the Press might have suddenly caught wind of this small reference to York in a game and thought they'd run with it. I guess that would indicate a slow news day.[/p][/quote]Think you've hit the nail right on the head there. Besides it's not the first time York has been in a video game it was featured in Resistance: Fall of Man on the PlayStation 3 with the first three levels being in York, it didn't get a mention in the local press which tells us that The Press play only on Xboxes. Silver
  • Score: 2

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