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Cliff Bleszinski wants to build an old-school PC arena shooter
Cliff Bleszinski wants to build an old-school PC arena shooter
December 11, 2013 | By Alex Wawro

December 11, 2013 | By Alex Wawro
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"I have a slide deck. I have a pitch, I have concept art, I know pretty much what I want to do."
- Cliff Bleszinski, co-creator of Jazz Jackrabbit, Gears of War.

Newsbrief: Former Epic Games design director Cliff Bleszinski shared a few details about the game he's hoping to make during a recent episode of Kevin Pereira's Pointless podcast.

"It'll be on the PC. It'll be a PC experience that hearkens back to a certain kind of game that we cut our teeth on," said Bleszinski. "A first-person shooter. I don't think a lot of these kids playing Call of Duty know what a proper arena shooter is."

Bleszinski has been a vocal critic of the industry since his departure from Epic Games late last year, pontificating on everything from the used games market to his belief that PC gaming is experiencing a renaissance.

Bleszinski and his wife Lauren made a guest appearance on the podcast to talk about a range of topics, including virtual reality, relationships, Bleszinski's interest in working at a studio free from the constraints of the "old guard", and more. We first heard about the discussion thanks to this NeoGAF thread, which contains a good bit of speculation about Bleszinski's interest in the Oculus Rift and the potential support he could muster for a Kickstarter campaign.






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Comments


Rodolfo Rosini
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"It'll be on the PC"

Good luck.

Michael Kearney
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You should listen to his points about why he wants it on PC, he pretty much nails it.

Andrew Shaftling
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Congratulations. You've been successfully brainwashed by a lot of mainstream crap.

Dane MacMahon
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Rodolfo, it ain't 2007 anymore.

Scott Southurst
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"It'll be on the PC"

Take my money...

Chris Book
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Ironic since he helped turned Epic into the bro-shooter capital with Gears of War and the casualization of Unreal Tournament.

Jennis Kartens
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Very ironic, even cynical, given many of his past statements since he became so popular after his involvement in Gears of War.

Here is one of those:

“I think people would rather make a game that sells 4.5 million copies than a million and “Gears” is at 4.5 million right now on the 360. I think the PC is just in disarray… what’s driving the PC right now is ‘Sims’-type games and ‘WoW‘ and a lot of stuff that’s in a web-based interface. You just click on it and play it. That’s the direction PC is evolving into So for me, the PC is kind of the secondary part of what we’re doing. It’s important for us, but right now making AAA games on consoles is where we’re at.”

James Yee
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Good luck Cliff, though I have long left the Arena shooter behind as being too confined. *Shrugs*

SD Marlow
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Proper arena shooter? Seems like it's all just running and gunning, the kind of frag-fest that gives multiplayer a really bad smell in my book. Sniping at spawn points... yep, it's been around since day one. Maybe he is referring to Gauntlet, the multiplayer RPG arcade game from the late 80's... To this day I still remember "Elf, you greedy bastard" (fastest character always grabbed all the food).

Jon shaw
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Bfg spawn point is frown upon if done it more 3 frags.

Ray Dahlia
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Sounds great to me, Cliff. Bring the genre back. There's room in the world for more than one type of FPS. We don't all have to play the same damned modern-battlefield-ironsights crap that gets churned out year after year. If you need a level designer, I'm your guy.

Ian Richard
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Even better than no ironsights, bring back weapons! I miss the days where I could choose between Radiation Spitters, Ricochet lasers, homing rockets, proximity mines, and all sorts of fun things.

Now, I'm allowed to choose between 37 identical assault rifles. Oh, what fun I have these days.

Michael Joseph
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FPShmup. Doom 2 felt a lot more shmupy with it's focus on movement and aim (often at same time) mechanics to defeat challenges. The narrative was intentionally thin with "contest of skill" being the main focus driving the design.

FPS design today is much more story and "flow" driven. Developers are too afraid of frustrating the poor player to provide them any real challenges.

Serious Sam was far far from perfect, but it brought the shmup back with the 1st and 2nd encounters but it looks more like a generic HL2 clone now with SS3.

free concept :)

I, Space Gladiator
Abducted by aliens to fight in their gladiatorial games. Fight to survive. Fight to win $$$. Use your winnings to purchase equipment, pets, the finest doctors and the finest companions for inside and outside the arena. Wager on yourself and other gladiators through SpaceBook. Earn enough and you can buy your own freedom... maybe buy your own gladiators and your own arenas.

Features:
- bizarre levels designed to satiate an audience that has grown increasingly desensitized to spectacle.
- betting system with odds
- hire bounty hunters to track down and capture fresh meat from across the galaxy.
- intergalactic player.. err gladiator rankings
- bizarre opponents captured from all over the universe
- bizarre single player challenges such as the Space Harrier Gauntlet, the OldBoy\Operation Wolf strafe gauntlet, the Invaders/Galaga hailstorm defense challenge, the co-op defend the line tower defense style challenge, etc
- progress from slave to slaver, exploited to exploiter... because uh... yeah. You have bought in. Kill or be killed is the only rule there is! Do unto others before others do unto you. If you can't beat'em join'em. Hey, don't you judge me! These experiences change a man! You'd have done the same damn thing! Oh God...

SD Marlow
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@Michael Joseph - You just described a re-make of Tongue of the Fatman, and I'd so play it (hopefully it isn't ruined by a F2P model).

Michael Joseph
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Had never heard of that title before now but you weren't kidding. Only difference is instead of FPS it's a Mortal Kombat / Street Fighter beat'em up.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qngBXbs3Of0


Michael Kearney
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I heard a bit of this on the Joe Rogan Experience, he had some pretty solid points as to why it would work.

Luis Guimaraes
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Unrearu Tourunamentu vs Quaku!

Please Cliff give us a level editor ASAP :D

I have an "idea" for an Arena Shooter, it'd be basically Ultimate Ninja Storm in first person and you have to aim everything, but instead of guns it's all spells and such and the maps are more open and less corridors (like Rising-Sun and Antalus, watch a duel of UT2004 in DM-Antalus, it's awesome)... and with a Tag-Team system where you change your fighters on the go as in MVC/Soul Calibur.

The other "idea" is LITERALLY UT2k4 vs Quake3 vs CoD (ha) where players can join for the basic game and pickup super armors that turn you into the other game, this would ease modern shooter players into seeing all the awesome stuff the nice guys do and get to learn and enjoy it too (surprisingly close to when I was thinking of that, Titanfall was announced, but it's not really the same thing...), and tournament rules that allow you to play 1 Arena Dueler vs a team 4/5 Modern Shooter guys or Duelers from different games, each with their own physics, movements and weapons (again, UT2k4 vs Quake3).

And an "open bracket tournament" system where you fight anybody that haven't made their fight fight yet, then if you win you get to the upper bracket and them to the lower bracket, then you don't have a fixed opponent but instead, anytime you want to play your match, the matchmaking will join your with anybody else that also won their first match (even if the guy you beat first have lost and replayed from the beginning and won while you took a few day out of the game), and so it goes until you on a Grand Final in your 8th or 6th match or so, always playing people on the same circumstances as you. An "Open Pool Bracket" system where you get to play virtual 16-man or 32-man double elimination brackets and gain ranks and win prizes, etc.

I even worked on a tiny movement mod when I was considering making one of these games, but we can't afford to build a multiplayer title atm:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-CLUUalx5c
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZi34j8DbLs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e100aVufSOQ

Sterling Reames
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I'm guessing he watched the John Romero playthrough of Doom the other day. Hard not to be inspired after that.

Mike Wasilewski
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Its already been made, and its called Hawken.

M

Benjamin Quintero
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On the surface this sounds meh, but when you hear him talk about it in the interview it feels like he has a real grasp of what needs to happen. So I'm actually excited to see this (if it does happen). I am VERY hopeful that it's not just another F2P, micro-transaction-to-hell shooter. It probably will be... But I'm still holding out hope that I can just pay for a game and play it without tiny carrots around every corner.

Kevin Fishburne
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The most fun FPS's I've ever played were Doom II, Unreal Tournament 2004 and Quake III Arena. Things started to slow down after that, as in you move slow, shoot slow and there's way too much cinematic bullshit going on around you. In the pursuit of better graphics the levels have also become ultra-cluttered and identifying targets is a PITA. I don't know exactly what type of game Cliff is planning to make, but I hope it brings back the soul of the genre and avoids all the modern day fluff.


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