New studio Embark announces new free-to-play shooter, The Finals

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Four years ago, the design director of Electronic Arts left to co-found his own studio, created with the support of Nexon. On Monday, Patrick Söderlund’s studio unveiled its first game: The finalsa free-to-play team-based multiplayer shooter inspired by gory sci-fi sports tales such as squid game and The running manwhere just about anything on the game’s maps can be destroyed.

The finals, said Embark Studios creative director Gustav Tilleby, is “a hero builder, not a hero shooter.” As an early trailer shows, players will have access to a variety of weapons and their tactical uses, ranging from a katana and other melee weapons, to rocket launchers, and even a foam gun. who can reinforce crumbling walls or build a bridge to higher ground. .

“We want to create a game that provides players with the tools to interact, change, and use their world in meaningful ways,” Tilleby said. “So he’s a shooter; it’s a game where aiming and shooting is important. But it is also a game where players can use the environment and adapt to changes in the environment.

“We want The finals be a game about intuitiveness; wherever you think something should work, it probably will,” Tilleby said. Hence the complete destruction that players can cause all over the map. A standard match in The finals will feature four teams of three players each. It’s “not a battle royale, it’s not a military simulation,” Tilleby pointed out.

Stockholm-based Embark Studios was co-founded in 2018 by Söderlund and Rob Runnesson, who is also Embark’s chief creative officer. Originally, Embark’s first game was to be ARC Raidersa free-to-play third-person sci-fi shooter that was announced in December during The Game Awards 2021. In August, Embark announced ARC Raiders has been postponed to 2023; but something called “Project Discovery” – Which one is The finals — “progressed faster than we imagined,” Söderlund said, shifting its development and launch planning into the timeline.

The finals“Fully destructible environments” mean there’s a lot of chaos around it,” Tilleby said. He called the maps “hyperrealistic virtual playgrounds,” which are “based on iconic real-world locations.” shown on Monday was based on the Hotel Monaco in Monte Carlo, for example (although Embark didn’t give details on where the game will be headed).

Environments will have changing weather and time of day to further differentiate each match. Players can destroy furniture and decor, or entire buildings themselves, by blowing up a load-bearing wall and watching the rest of the structure crumble. “You can interact with physical objects, you can pick them up and throw them, set things on fire,” Tilleby said.

The key innovation behind all this destruction, Tilleby said, is that it all works on The finals‘ servers, as opposed to their customers’ hardware. This is what makes it possible for an entire building to collapse, Tilleby said. “Server-side movement and destruction is another thing we’ve been pursuing for a long time,” he added. “In a multiplayer space, it opens up so many possibilities. It’s kind of like a holy grail.

Player avatars will, of course, be infinitely customizable, both in appearance and performance. “You can be nimble, in a way [like a] ninja, climb on rooftops and shoot down enemies with a katana, or you can be a heavy tank, with a rocket launcher. It’s really up to you.” Yes, the game “will definitely have some form of battle pass,” Tilleby said. During Monday’s briefing, we saw players dressed in ballerina tutus and samurai armor , among many other outfits.

The finals will be hosting a closed alpha starting Thursday, September 29 and running until 3:00 a.m. EDT on Monday, October 3. will be admitted. (When The finals will launch in full, it will also be coming to PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X). Players can expect to play a game that has bugs and balance issues, and are asked not to broadcast their game (although sharing written impressions is fine). The alpha will take place in Europe and North America.

The finals does not yet have a launch date or window; Embark is planning larger-scale alpha and beta testing after that next weekend.

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