Was certainly worth a listen to get an insight into the development of Rome: Total War and some tidbits about Empire, Rome 2 and Shogun 2.
Interesting to hear about how Rome was essentially the work of programmers and some artists due to the absence of a dedicated game design team, how closely development of Medieval was followed by Rome, some of the crunch and subsequent burnout the programming team experienced with Rome that flowed into Empire, how the shift from code-based unit actions to animation-based unit actions influenced the game, and some of the tribulations the art team had to go through to get assets into the game.
Perhaps the most intriguing piece of information I gained from listening to that episode of 3MA was just how quickly Creative Assembly managed to develop Total War: Shogun 2. In some ways I guess it makes sense given the tight geographical and thematic focus of the game and yet it still seems crazy that they turned out one of my favourite Total War games within a year.
Especially in comparison to the time it took to develop Rome 2 afterwards, followed by the time it then took to get that game into a satisfactory state after the disappointing state of the game on release. Though, it does tally with my opinion that some of CA’s best Total War games or DLC campaigns are the ones with a solid, tightly defined scope.
Was also intriguing to learn that Rome’s Barbarian Invasion expansion was led by their former studio in Brisbane, Australia. Guess I can chalk up another one of my favourite Total War games (expansion in this case) to the Australian branch of Creative Assembly, alongside Medieval 2 and its Kingdoms expansion. Shame they never got to lead development on another Total War game considering the number of different studios and internal teams CA has working on Total War content these days.