Warcraft III‘s mod scene is underappreciated. It brought MOBAs to the world with DotA, crystallised the modern tower defence, did a lot for wave survival modes, and had dozens of other weird multiplayer ideas and genres I’d still like to see brought back and expanded. So huzzah for The Red Solstice, a game unashamedly inspired by the old WC3 Night of the Dead mods.
It’s a top-down co-op survival shooter with co-op for up to eight players, about scavenging for supplies and exploding floods of awful monsters on Mars. And it’s now out on Steam Early Access.
The Red Solstice plonks your squad of snipers, heavies, medics and whatnot down on a Mars overrun with nasties. The main mode gives an hour to activate defenses, set traps, find supplies, and generally shoot monsters on procedurally-generated maps. As markers of its WC3 heritage, it’s got levelling and skills and those clicky RTS controls and view that I do enjoy recognising in games.
It’s £11.39 on on Steam, or £17.99 for a four-pack. Because it’s a co-op game, see. Or is right now. Single-player is coming later. More modes, missions, monsters and all that will also be added before it properly launches. It is yet another game that went through Kickstarter then came to Early Access, but will you begrudge them poor financial planning?
In a funny way, the convenience of playing Warcraft III mods is part of why so many get forgotten. They’d download automatically when you joined a game from the ‘custom game’ lobbies, a huge constantly-refreshing list of confusing names. When you come back a few days later, who knows which one of the hundreds of custom maps you’ve downloaded is that good one? An hour of queuing on FilePlanet for a download, now that makes you remember a mod!
Look, a launch trailer:
And a bit from the ‘Fortification’ mode, which is exactly what it sounds like: