You Got Your FPS In My RTS! Abatron Announced

The age-old rivalry: humans vs. cyberdemons.

We’re busy young go-getters, you and I. We’re dynamic, we’re vibrant, we live life on the go, and we simply don’t have the time to play every video game. We blend our meals into pastes to gulp, so why can’t we do the same with video games? We like video games, sure, so what can we do to enjoy more of them more quickly? Don’t play a first-person shooter then a real-time strategy game, blend them together! Here, have a look at Abatron on your way to whatever it is you’re saving all of this time to do.

Developers W3 Studios formally announced the FPS-RTS last week. It falls far more on the RTS side of the hyrbid, unlike say Natural Selection. Abatron’s the usual ‘gather resources, build an army, send army out to stand near other army blasting away’ RTS model, only you can also jump into any unit and control them directly yourself.

I do enjoy how this creates opportunities for units to become ‘heroes,’ outsmarting and outkilling their AI-controlled identical siblings. Caring about individual units as anything other than resources to blow can be difficult in large RTS battles, but stepping into their boots can quickly give them stories and builds bonds.

Abatron’s built upon Valve’s Source engine, so the FPS side should have some nice solid movement. W3 also plan to to support Source’s Hammer editor for custom maps, and to release the game’s assets for modding too.

And yes, this is a very ’90s tone of humans vs. cyberdemons in a sci-fi future:


  1. KDR_11k says:

    Let’s hope FPS mode is worth using, it’s been attempted before but usually controlling one unit directly is not worth the tradeoff of leaving your other units unattended.

    • Volcanu says:

      That’s always the nub of the problem with these games right there. Usually one or other of the FPS or RTS bit is rather superfluous – depending on the scale of the game etc.

      That said Battlezone did it reasonably well, all them years back…although as I recall the RTS bit was on the fiddly side. I think it kept the unit count a bit lower too, so that you made much more of an impact when controlling units directly, but memory is a funny thing and I might have got that wrong.

      • KDR_11k says:

        I think another factor with the likes of Battlezone back in the day was that you had no RTS-view mode, if you wanted to see what’s going on and give out orders you had to be there in person.

        • mouton says:

          You could build a satlink station and have a barebones rts view. Battlezone 2, while horribly flawed, had it even cooler as you had to physically go to a command bunker.

      • gguillotte says:

        I always liked Urban Assault.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Yeah. Dragon Commander very much has this problem.

        Also I’m going to mention Machines just because I remembered it.

      • Bugamn says:

        Can I say Hostile Waters? I found the AI personalities interesting, although sometimes I just wish I could tell them to stay at a place, instead of hunting each enemy on the map.

  2. stabitha says:

    Well I’m always open to more interesting RTS games. Based on the video, though, I have to say it could definitely benefit from a cleaner artstyle, I had quite some trouble making out anything on there.

  3. CookPassBabtridge says:

    What happened to the guy with the wotsit who was making the thing with the thing? You know, one bloke, FPS RTS hybrid. All shiny metal future tanks.

    • Gap Gen says:

      You’re describing Battlezone, but I assume from your comment that someone is making a new one. And yeah, I like how the 21st century is still catching up with the 20th.

    • WiggumEsquilax says:

      There’s a Battlezone modder who occasionally pops his head up around these RPS forums. If we could remember his name, we could try saying it three times.

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        I bet it will be Steve. Steve the Battlezone modder.

      • Volcanu says:

        Can you leap into the tanks in that and control them directly? I thought not…but I havent been following it that closely, so could be wrong….

        • c-Row says:

          I thought the OP mixed stuff up and was mostly remembering “one guy making all the stuffs”.

          • Volcanu says:

            Ah, I getcha.

          • CookPassBabtridge says:

            Heh I am old and I do get confused.
            HAM oh sorry I nodded off then.
            Yes ta for your attempts at memory jogging, its the game called Universum that was being made by one fella. And it had a thing with a thing that did the doobree with the wotsit.

    • Correa says:

      Universum : War Front? I think that’s what you were recalling there.

      link to

  4. Frank says:

    I wonder if W3 is any relation to S2 Games, whose Savage is the first MP FPS-RTS I can remember enjoying…

  5. 88GJS88 says:

    Dungeon Keeper used to allow you to take control of one of your creatures, and once you realised that you could group other creatures with yourself using the “7” key, it generally become one of the more effective ways to lead an attack.

  6. captain nemo says:

    Reminds me of Sacrifice, one of my favourite games

  7. Siimon says:

    Looks so cluttered :(
    Color scheme issues maybe?

  8. The Random One says:

    Assuming Direct Control: The Game? It’s actually a pretty neat concept.

  9. Yardsailor says:

    Looks pretty bad so far…

    But if they have “full” modding support, who knows, the community might do something amazing with it.