Cliff Bleszinski New Game Being Revealed This Week

Cliff Bleszinski has been teasing Project Bluestreak since the middle of 2014, but now it looks like concrete details are on their way. Bleszinski’s Boss Key and publisher Nexon have launched a teaser site called The Shattering with a countdown, which currently has two days, six hours, 37 minutes and 33 seconds left to go.

Although the website is called The Shattering, that’s not necessarily the game’s name if Bleszinski’s tweet is anything to go by. Instead it seems likely that the Shattering is the in-world name for whatever world-changing event precedes the game, and is presumably what’s being depicted in the world of fires and slanting skyscrapers pictured above.

We already know for sure that Bluestreak is a free-to-play first-person shooter set in a post-apocalyptic sci-fi world. Here’s what Bleszinski said about the kind of game he wants to make in a Reddit AMA last year:

“I want to make a skill based game where someone who is really, really good is seen as a player with nearly godlike abilities. Sure, once in a while the person who sucks might get lucky with a stray shot and take that person down, but I want to craft a game that has weapons and moves that are easy to learn but to really make them sing takes thousands of hours of play just like a professional athlete would. Anyone can toss a football, but Drew Brees can get it through the tire at X yards every time.”

But if I was to speculate, I’d guess that Bluestreak, whatever it’s called, will fall somewhere on the spectrum of games ranging from Destiny to Warframe and Gearbox’s Battleborn. Or as Randy Pitchford described the latter game, I’m going to guess Bluestreak is a “hobby-grade coop campaign; genre-blended, multi-mode competitive e-sports; meta-growth, choice + epic Battleborn Bluestreak Heroes!”

If I’m wrong, perhaps Bleszinksi will retweet this story with the word “Nope.”

26 Comments

  1. Troubletcat says:

    I would not describe any of the games mentioned as having anything at all to do with what Cliffy B. described in that AMA quote.

    Try Quake III or UT.

    • jezcentral says:

      I’d like to know what twist he’s going to put on it, though. If you want a high-speed shooter, the Great Granddaddy itself, UT, is just around the corner. It’s already the best shooter-of-its-type, even in Alpha.

      • Troubletcat says:

        The new UT is so, so good isn’t it? It’s too bad there are so few players at the moment. I hope EPIC are able to build some hype and get the community going.

        …Maybe I’m biased, UT’99 was my first online shooter.

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          DelrueOfDetroit says:

          I played it for a bit but am basically waiting for things to get a lot more set in stone before dedicating a lot of time to it. I would imagine others feel the same.

        • caff says:

          Hopefully RPS will visit it from time to time (HINT BOMB DROPPED)

  2. Blackcompany says:

    So…he wants me to play the same shooter for thousands of hours, in order to get really good at it, or be able to play it on a competitive level? In this day and age of endless backlogs and unprecedented numbers of quality games?

    And to make it worse, he has partnered with Nexon, notorious for grind fests that are more akin to tech demos of what their games could be, than full fledged games themselves?

    At this point, “Cautiously Optimistic” would be too kind a sentiment…

  3. cpt_freakout says:

    Good to see Cliffy B on this new Sonic the Hedgehog game

    … (badum-pish)

  4. SupahSpankeh says:

    Am I the only one worried by Nexon?

    MOBAFPSesport guaranteed BTW.

    • Spider Jerusalem says:

      Nope. Hard to get excited about anything with Nexon on it.

    • EhexT says:

      Yeah Nexon means it’s instantly uninteresting. They’re the company that hardlocks regions from playing with each other and, if they’re porting an asian mmo (which they usually are), have the US version 4 months behind on content and the EU version 8 months behind on content.

  5. Gryz says:

    “I want to make a skill based game where someone who is really, really good is seen as a player with nearly godlike abilities.”

    Fail.
    Big fail.

    Have you seen the difference between UT99 and its successors ? UT99 was a success. The newer games were not. Why ? I have a firm opinion on this, although I have never seen it discussed online. Let me explain.

    In UT99, there were splash-damage weapons. And they were powerful. 8Ball (rocket launcher), Flak cannon, Goo Gun, ASMD combos. Those weapons were just as powerful, if not more powerful than the hitscan weapons: sniper rifle and minigun. A new player, or a mediocre player, could play rather effectively if he used the splash weapons. The good, experienced players, with godlike aim, etc, would still win. But they were not untouchable. They could get killed, and they would get killed.

    This had a few nice results. 1) Even mediocre players could feel they were useful in a team-game. CTF was the most populair variant of UT99. A mediocre player could decide to defend, while the best players could attack. Both were vital for the success of the team. 2) This would allow new, mediocre and good player to play together, and have fun, and feel good. 3) New players could join, defend the flag, or defend the base entrance, and feel a bit useful. They could slowly improve over time. And they would become true members of the community.

    UT2003, UT2004 and UT3 had a focus on “skill”. Hitscan weapons were 10x more powerful than splash-weapons. Because “the pros” hated it when they got killed by goo, a rocket pack with 6 rocket, bouncing grenades, or flak spam. Everybody used sniper and minigun. Everybody would fight from distance. Good players were untouchable. The new players would not have any chance to kill anyone. They would stop quickly, and play another games. The mediocre players would play a little longer, as they used to love UT99. But because they would get crushed by the best players, the game would just not be fun for them. It doesn’t matter if you lose in a game. But if you get crushed all the time, it’s just not fun. So they left too. What you will get is that the remaining players are a very small group of very good players. Awesome for CliffyB. But not for his potential customers. And thus not for his employer. This will be a dead game soon.

    The sad thing is that the people who made UT99 didn’t even seem to realize why their game was so successful. Regarding (team-)gameplay, UT99 was just a lucky fluke.

    • PoulWrist says:

      Since that day we saw the invention of the matchmaker though.

      • LexW1 says:

        Matchmakers are still pretty unreliable in MP games, though, especially if the designers aren’t willing to make you wait literally minutes for a match-up (and the smaller the community, and the more stringent the ping requirements, the harder it is to make matches). For example, HotS tries to avoid waits of over 1 minute, and has a huge community, but usually ends up having to mix low and high skill players to try to get an “average”. So you’ll get people with vast skill disparities – that sort of thing in a later-UT or Q3-style game leads to horrible mismatches, as one “mid-high” skill Q3 player can, for example, outplay multiple “mid” skill players.

        That is precisely what CliffyB is proposing here “godlike” – just like Q3.

    • LexW1 says:

      Very well said, and a good example too.

      It was around that era that I realized, as a player, that high-skill games drove a lot of players away. Quake only really avoided this fate by being “the only game in town”, because it had the same issue (that being that a skilled player was virtually impossible to kill – albeit that was more down to stuff like timing armour spawns and so on). Quake 3 did meet more or less the same fate – the skill gaps could be staggering. I could dominate a server full of normal players to the point where it clearly wasn’t fun for them, almost never dying, and yet I could be outclassed by really pro-level players to the point where I might get one kill on them to their twenty on me. It was very obvious when playing with friends that they didn’t want to play games as heavily skill-biased as that, didn’t have fun getting virtually no kills except on each other, and so on.

      I saw the same thing in fighting games to a significant extent – ones which were highly skilled, and where practice and knowledge gave a massive advantage, were less fun for and rapidly became boring to anyone who wasn’t an expert.

      So I think there’s a balance to be struck, and it’s one that I suspect this game is going to screw up magnificently. The particularly awful thing is, if you start with “The best always always win” design, you can’t really back off from it without being accused of dumbing down and so on, and potentially getting a (misleading) bad name for your game from online pundits (who are still very loud), so it’s really something they need to get right from day 1.

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      DelrueOfDetroit says:

      Remember when explosive weapons in games were the best ones instead of the hour long reloading, water-balloon splash damaging, invitations to suicide we have now.

      [/hyperbole]

    • Spluff says:

      I disagree strongly on a whole number of points.

      The first is your assertion than only UT99 was successful – UT2004 was hugely successful, with huge sales and great reviews. UT3 was the only one that was unsuccessful.

      The second, is that you state that hitscan weapons are considered more skilled – most players would strongly disagree with this. Hitscan weapons are generally considered less skilled than projectile weapons, hence why a good player using the shock rifle combo can dominate players using the easier to use hitscan weapons like a minigun. Similarly, a good player with a rocket launcher in Q3A will dominate somebody using an easier hitscan weapon like a lightning gun.

      Thirdly, I’d disagree that they went away from the projectile/splash weapons in the later games. UT3 made the secondary fire modes of things like the rocket launcher stupid strong. UT2004 did generally see less of the projectile weapons in online play, but I think that’s for a few reasons. One big reason is because most online play was Onslaught, and Onslaught maps were a lot larger due to the vehicles. Larger maps make projectile weapons less effective. The second reason was the inclusion of dodging, which obviously made it less effective. So, projectile/splash effectiveness was down a bit in UT2004 compared to UT99, but it was probably up in UT3 compared to the previous games.

      Finally, I’d disagree that the skill ceiling increased in each game. A lot of the backlash towards UT3 was due to them trying to make the game ‘accessible’ to new players, and the decreased skill ceiling (ie. the removal of of dodge jumping).

      • Gryz says:

        I should have mentioned dodging. Dodging in UT99 was a nice evolution of movement in shooter-games. But in subsequent games, they went totally overboard. A good dodger would become a lot harder to hit. And especially harder to hit with splash-weapons. Absolute damage numbers might not have been decreased in some/all games. But the effectiveness of the splash-weapons went down a lot.

        Because of the dodging, maps became bigger. On bigger maps, there’s more distance between players. Another reason why splash-weapons were less effective.

        My point still is: if you make a game that caters to the best players, you will lose the mediocre players, and there will be no influx of new players. The relative successes of UT2003, UT2004 and UT3 in multiplayer are proof of that.

  6. SuicideKing says:

    BTW regarding Destiny, Bungie recently put out a job listing for PC Compatibility Tester.

  7. Caelyn Ellis says:

    Thanks to the fifty bazillion promoted tweets I’ve seen this morning, I am already aware of and loathe this thing.

  8. Ross Angus says:

    In the absence of any evidence to the contrary, I’m going to assume that “The Shatterning” is like that scene in Being John Malkovich, but with William Shatner.

    A terrifying vision of the future.

  9. Jakkar says:

    Developer celebrities. Yuck.

    Cliff is, after all, a fairly irrelevant individual, who simply coasted on reputation/involvement in the Unreal franchise and knows how to smarm people into funding his projects, no?

    He’s not Peter Molyneux, but – while I hate to speak well of the man – at least PM had ambition. Far too much of it.

    Bleszinski simply remakes his own early games repeatedly/derivative, steroid-pumped cover shooters for a young-teen market, no?

  10. Jakkar says:

    Stealing the quote Gryz took above;

    “I want to make a skill based game where someone who is really, really good is seen as a player with nearly godlike abilities.”

    Yay, more elitism in first person shooters! A higher bar for entry and entertainment! A greater gulf between casuals and devotees, between late-arrivals and early-adopters. A muddier distinction between skill and cheating, while incenvitivising that ugly market for simulated skill.

    This is such a bad attitude for game design…

    • Jakkar says:

      I find that typo compelling, somehow… Incenvitivising. It needs more. Incenvitivitivitivising. Mmm.

  11. Generico says:

    Cliffy B is the Michael Bay of game design. That’s all you really need to know.

  12. Troubletcat says:

    Surprised how much hatred there is here for a true skill based game.

    The market is saturated with online shooters where any casual player can get plenty of kills. The extreme hardcore players feel underserved at the moment because there aren’t really many games that are worth the time and dedication.

    Is that market getting a couple of releases to suit their tastes among the swathe of more accessible titles really a bad thing?

  13. racccoon says:

    Looks shattering link to youtube.com