Epochal: Achron, Meta-Time Strategy


Things you can’t do in an RTS generally include: attacking your opponent in the past, undoing the future actions of your units, building things in the future and sending the back to a previous point in a game. These are all things you can do in Achron. The developers, who unveiled their idea at the 2009 GDC Experimental Gameplay Sessions explain it thus: “Achron is the world’s first meta-time strategy game, a real-time strategy game where players and units can jump to and play at different times simultaneously and independently.” It’s a game that takes the impossible notions of cross-time war that we see juggled so cleverly in time-travel science fiction, and turns them into a practical gaming model. This is seriously smart game design, and, potentially, it provides a model for “real-time” time travel in all kinds of games, not just strategy games. An explanatory trailer and press release await you below, and believe me, you are going to want to watch this.

Yeah. Yeah. There’s some more videos on the developer’s site. This one is particularly interesting:

When my opponent is.”

Thanks to Quinns for the link on this one.

Press Release

March 26, 2009 – Hazardous Software� unveiled Achron, the world’s first meta-time strategy game, at the 2009 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, California. The next revolution in time travel gameplay was demonstrated at the Experimental Gameplay Session.

Designed to reinvent the real-time strategy genre by allowing all players to travel through time, Achron is a futuristic science fiction game. Players and units have the ability to jump to and play at different times simultaneously and independently. Time travel is free and unlimited but it costs energy to change the time line. Players will be challenged to invent new strategies in a world where it is possible for them and their opponents to undo mistakes, change a strategy after committing to it, and alter the outcome of past battles.

Time travel transforms the strategy game landscape, stated Christopher Hazard, president and cofounder of Hazardous Software. It opens up new dimensions of strategies and gameplay. For example, imagine being able to see when and where your opponents are going to attack before they do.

Achron features both a captivating single player campaign and an online multiplayer mode. In addition to being able to build, expand, and attack as in typical RTS games, new mechanisms such as command hierarchy and smart-idling ease the management of a complex time travel environment. An intuitive user interface depicts events in the past and future allowing the player to navigate the time line.

Achron signifies the creation of a brand new sub-genre of video games that utilize gimmick-free time travel as one of the core gameplay mechanisms, said Mike Resnick, lead developer and cofounder of Hazardous Software. �The popular type of time travel abundant in science fiction is now available to the gaming community.

Further information about the game will be released in the upcoming months. To learn more about Achron, please visit the official web site at www.achrongame.com.

About Hazardous Software

Hazardous Software was incorporated in June 2007 and is headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina near Research Triangle Park. The company was founded to address the gamer�s desire for more innovative games in the marketplace. Hazardous Software believes games should challenge players minds while being entertaining and engaging.

Copyright 2008-2009 Hazardous Software Inc.

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