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Articles Home » PCM 09: General Articles » Interview with Cyanide: What's new in PCM09?
Interview with Cyanide: What's new in PCM09?

In previous interviews, Cyanide has reveiled some of the new features in Pro Cycling Manager 2009. In this interview with Xavier Wiart (aka Eyolfur), programmer at Cyanide Studios, we go into more depth with what we can expect from PCM09.

Let's start by summing up what's been said in PCMClub's interview, PCMWereld's interview and PCMBenelux' interview -- all with Clément Pinget. PCMClub revealed that we'd get more track events such as 200 Meters Flying Start, Scratch and Points Race and the possibility of creating your own team at the start of a career. Later, in an official press kit from Cyanide/Focus, it was also mentioned that omnium will also be in PCM09 along with the possibility of going to different velodromes instead of just the standard one in PCM08.

The press kit also mentioned 180 races, 65 teams, an official license of the Vuelta, and some screenshots showing improved graphics and a new rider control interface.

Later, PCMWereld's interview with Pinget revealed that a Virtual Ranking-tv-like feature has been added to the game while riding tours,. PCMBenelux followed up with their own interview which went into more specifics with the Create a Team-feature.

So, as Clément Pinget had now been saying some of the same things a couple of times, it was time to give him a rest and hear out another Cyanide employee, Xavier (as introduced in the beginning of this article).

Knowing that PCM08 was greatly improved in graphics, we expect the career mode of PCM09 to be improved this time - which Xavier confirms: "The career mode made a real progress this year. The team objectives, the rider’s evolution, the transfers, the staff influence are more realistic than last year. There will be a new gameplay on the secondary sponsor choice and obviously, the "create your own team" mode will boost the players imagination."

The transfers now have a new feature called 'Target a Rider', which seems to be an expansion of the Shortlist feature which was implented in PCM08: "For example, the transfers have been enhanced with a new system of "target a rider". During the season, you'll receive some news asking which riders you will aim for next season. It will strongly influence the rider decision and you'll have to find the best way to keep your best riders and sign the others."

A very interesting addon is also the new gameplay when it comes to signing secondary sponsors. In PCM08 (and previous games), it was basically a matter of asking a sponsor and signing whoever wanted you. It will be more complex in PCM09 with negotiations about the budget and 'demands' (in terms of sponsor goals) from the secondary sponsor. On this subject, Xavier says: The sponsors and goals are definitely linked in pcm09. You will have to sign secondary sponsors, but with a real negotiation instead of a yes/no answer. "You will have to sign for a monthly income and negotiate an objective, giving you a cash bonus if you are successful."

There's also been changes to the staff section. Again, previously, it's all been decided by the staff's reputation. In PCM08, a few stats for e.g. trainers were implented, but this has been expanded even more for PCM09: "The coach influence has changed because you won't hire a coach for the reputation only, but you will have to look at his training skills, to choose a coach that fits well with your squad needs. The coach has an important impact on the rider progression."

And on the subject of rider progression, many have complained that the stars system didn't work as well as in previous games. The stars system will stay, but to give more insight to and overview of the riders' progressions, an evolution graph has been implented. To this, Xavier says: You'll still get the star system to evaluate the rider potential in each charac, but you'll have a graph showing the rider evolution. It will help you to know when your rider is in big progression time or if he is in decline."

In the Press Kit sent out by Cyanide and Focus, it was mentioned that a new way of managing finances had made its way to PCM09 - luckily for us who've been frustrated a lot by the different limits (salary cap, etc.). Something that Cyanide also agrees with: "I must say that the former finance system was quite irritating sometimes, you could have millions in cash but you couldn't hire. [So in PCM09] you will be free to manage your money as you want. Moreover, you will receive your income every month and a new finance page will help you to keep the balance positive."

And still on the career mode subject, we couldn't help but ask even more to the Create a Team-feature, which we, probably among many other, find very interesting. We've previously been told that you can decide the budget yourself, but we wondered if it'd be possible to sign everyone, or if only very few riders would be interested in doing a late transfer: "We decided to let a lot of freedom in the 'create your team' mode. You will pick the riders you want (pro, amateur or young), without negociation. The only contraints are the budget cap and a min/max squad size. Your objectives will be automatically processed and you will begin in Continental division."

Enough about career mode for now. So let's turn to the actual 3D racing instead. It's been mentioned that the AI has been improved - which, with no deeper explanation, is pretty much just a buzz word. So we asked Eyolfur to explain what's been improved, and he explained - without going into depth with it - that we'll be able to see more stunning (I guess, explosive) attacks in the mountains and more team work to bring back those attacks. We'll also see more attacks in the final kilometres of a race - so, maybe a 'Vinokourov' will finally be possible on Champs Elysses ;)

On the Racing Mode subject, we've all seen the new GUI on the revealed screenshots. This won't have any influence on the energy bars (meaning you won't have t relearn how to play) - they look different, but they are based on the same principle as in PCM08.

As with every year, there's discussions whether or not it will be possible to convert databases, keep the same jerseys, etc. For the very same reason, we asked some questions on this subject. First of all, no extra stats have been added, but with the AI changes, the stat matrixes will probably be different in PCM09. And as with pretty much all PCM-games, the DB structure has been changed, making it impossible to directly use PCM08 databases with PCM09. Xavier promises, though, that he's up for helping the DB makers convert their DB, should it be needed.

And Cyanide will help indirectly from the very beginning: They will once again release a Database Editor. He also confirms that no new stage editor will be released. Another good news are that the jersey format will stay the same, meaning that all jerseys created for PCM08 works perfectly well with PCM09.

Lastly, we tried to convine Xavier that it's time to reveal the 2nd Cycling Game which Cyanide will release in 2009 (as revealed by PCM.daily in an interview with the CEO of Cyanide, Patrick Pliggersdorfer). Unfortunately, he wasn't up for it. And he wasn't willing to mention anything about PCM10 either.

So, instead, let's look forward to Pro Cycling Manager 2009 which will be released in June 2009 on PC and PSP. And who knows, maybe the XBOX version will make it to the shops this year?

Comments
#1 | markene2 on 09. May 2009 10:06
Nice Interview Smile
#2 | qqasasas on 27. July 2010 02:54
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