After all the clever teases and fake website misdirection, John Romero and Adrian Carmack have finally revealed what they are working on through Night Work Games, and if it is what we think it will be - i.e. a game in the spirit of the old FPS classics such as DOOM and Quake - this should breeze through its Kickstarter campaign rather quickly.
Called BLACKROOM, the game plans a 10-plus-hour single-player campaign, multiplayer, and modability. According to the press release, the game will be "a visceral, varied and violent shooter that harkens back to classic FPS play with a mixture of exploration, speed, and intense, weaponized combat. Use fast, skillful movement to dodge enemy attacks, circle-strafe your foes, and rule the air as you rocket jump in the single- and multiplayer modes." Sound familiar?
The single-player campaign is expected to cover a wide area of locales from a Victorian mansion and ghost towns to pirate galleons. Multiplayer maps will be set in military locations, space, and yes, even hell fire, with modes that include co-op, 1-on-1 deathmatch and free-for-all arena. Six maps will come with the game, but more can be added by the community through the planned level editor. The game will also have its own dedicated servers and mod support. And, in shades of Trent Reznor, Night Work has added metal guitarist George Lynch to handle the soundtrack.
As for the game design, remember how much fun the BFG 9000 was? It sounds like Romero and Carmack are getting creative again, perhaps pulling a page from Valve's portal gun. Players will be able to "affect the holographic worlds with a device called the Boxel, and influence the environment, your weapons and your enemies." Carmack, who will be art director for the game, said the setting of the story gives him some creative freedom in building the world, especially one that traditional FPS players may find different.. "BLACKROOM technology lets its users enter just about any universe imaginable, and gives them the power to alter the world."
“We’re developing exactly the type of game we think a lot of shooter fans want," Romero said, who will act as the game lead. "It’s the type of shooter we’re known for, and the type of game we love to play ourselves. It’s a skillful shooter, from movement to weapon and map mastery.”
The game is still quite a ways off, being slated for a Winter 2018 release for PC and Mac through Steam. The Kickstarter, which launched today and will end in late May, is seeking $700,000, with backer levels ranging from $5 to $10,000. The $29 level gets you a digital download of the game, while $59 gets you a boxed set and thumbdrive. And at $250 you upgrade to the collector's edition with some perks such as a coffee mug, shirt and soundtrack. At the $450 level, quantities begin to get limited, and there is even a $666 level where 666 players can join in a devlish deathmatch with Carmack, Romero and other backers. You can check out the page for more elevels and details.
In addition, the Kickstarter is encouraging fans to get the word out on social media, post selfies and get photos of themselves in various locales similar to those that will probably be in the game. Accomplishing these will grant achievements, and completing so many achievements will unlock extra perks.
A Twitch Livestream is planned from 12-2 p.m. ET today, where Romero and Carmack will promote the Kickstarter, talk more about the game and answer questions from fans.
Personally, I know they can't say DOOM or Quake without inciting the legal ire of Bethesda, but if this turns out anywhere close to the original games, this will be glorious. Old-school FPS will live again, and if you don't believe me, check out our in-depth interview with Romero about the game.