Insomniac tries social gaming with 'Outernauts'

By Steve Watts, May 09, 2012 9:30am PDT

Insomniac Games has announced its next title, and it's a far cry from the studio's core games like the Resistance and Ratchet franchises. Outernauts is the company's first social game, currently in closed beta and set to launch on Facebook this summer. It seems a bit more complex than your average social game, though, offering adventure and role-playing elements.

The Outernauts are tasked with capturing and training alien creatures, uncovering clues to the galaxy's "ancients," and battling space pirates and evil corporations. In practice, this means harvesting loot from uncharted planets and asynchronous multiplayer with your friends to battle wild space monsters.

The game's Facebook page offers a look at the art style, a handful of screenshots, and forums. A public beta is promised in the near future.

"We see a huge opportunity to reach an entirely different audience of gamers through Facebook," said company president Ted Price, in the announcement. "As we have demonstrated for nearly twenty years in the console games space, we're confident we can help evolve the definition of a game experience on Facebook. With Outernauts, we are delivering a deep story with real RPG strategy, coupled with Insomniac's signature sense of humor."

For those who might be lamenting Insomniac's move toward the casual space, don't fret too much. The developer is still busy on Overstrike as well.

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