LawBreakers getting new maps and competitive mode

LawBreakers

Zero gravity FPS LawBreakers [official site] will add three new maps, new game modes and a new class before the end of the year, developers Boss Key Productions have announced. All updates will be free and the first – due later this month – will include a map called Namsan, a new temporary team deathmatch mode, and some extra tutorials to make it easier for new players to jump on board.

Other temporary game modes, called skirmishes, will pop up throughout the rest of the year. But perhaps the most significant change is the addition of a permanent competitive ranked mode, something the game desperately needs because it lacks a meaningful progression system – as I mentioned in my LawBreakers review. That’ll arrive before the end of the year too, alongside a map specifically designed for the game’s blitzball mode (where players vie for control for a central ball and then fly it to the other team’s goal), plus the game’s first asymmetric map, called Valhalla.

There’s very few details on Namsan other than it’s the first map set outside the US. The screenshot, below, gives you an idea of the art style:

namsam

The game’s competitive mode will be called Boss Leagues, and again the information on it is sparse. More details will arrive closer to the time of release, Boss Key said.

Here’s some shots of the other two maps that are incoming: first, Gateway (the Blitzball specific map), and Valhalla, the asymmetric map set in California’s Sequoia National Forest that features “environmental hazards”.

Gateway Lawbreakers

8valhalla

As for the new class, we’ll have to wait for more details on that, too, because it’s still going through art design.

You can read the full announcement for more.

15 Comments

  1. Blowfeld81 says:

    Game is dead… Peak of 250 people playing

  2. emotionengine says:

    Namsan is presumably set in a future Seoul: link to en.wikipedia.org

    Hard to see in this pic, but bottom right label reads “Beware of Steps” in Korean (there’s a higher res version at the official site).

  3. keithzg says:

    Is there a map editor yet? When CliffyB was going around telling people this game was a “throwback”, I was like “oooh, you mean a vibrant community of mod and mapmaking?”

  4. Lobotomist says:

    The game population is so low that even people that want to buy the game, hesitate now.

    They should do something like Mirage did few days ago (faced with came problem). They made game free for 24 hours.

    This would boost numbers significantly. Servers would fill up. And would give game fighting chance.

    They should not look at those numbers as lost sales, but won community.

    • Banks says:

      Making the game free won’t solve all of its problems. The playerbase is so low because there is simply not enough interest around it. The open beta had only 7000 concurrent players at its peak.

      They have to market it better and for that they have to make the game more marketable (communicate the gameplay better, redesign the characters, offer an appealing experience for newcomers, differentiate it from the others …) And if they do that, I’m sure something like free weekends will be very successful.

      If they just make it free right now I’m afraid it’s not going to work.

  5. Hoot says:

    Lawbreakers problem is two-fold. The first is that it feels about as generic as a game can get. It might as well have been called Team Shooter X.

    Second is that it is competing against games that do what it does but that do it far better. Overwatch is the better team/hero shooter and Quake Champions is the better twitch/arena shooter. Both of these also have a lot more character.

    • Premium User Badge

      particlese says:

      For what it’s worth, I approached it as a dumb UT-style team-based FPS with interesting/fun/good movement (once you get a handle on it, anyway) and little effort wasted on story and personality and such, and I’ve not been disappointed at all. Some will read that as damning praise, but really, as you said, there are games which cover the other aspects better, so perhaps Boss Key and it’s publisher need to re-target or clarify their pitch a little.

      Edit: I’ll be interested to see what Quake feels like, but neither it nor new-UT strikes me as as much fun for me, despite Quake games traditionally having great movement and UT having funky weapons and stuff. I think and hope there’s room for both, but we’ll see how it shakes out down the road.

      • Premium User Badge

        particlese says:

        AGH!! No apostrophe in the second “it’s”! Bloody telephonic autocorrect and hasty editing…

      • Hoot says:

        As someone who spent 8 hours back in the days of 56k dial-up downloading a 48mb Quake 3 Arena demo and then playing the full release to death, I can confirm that the new Quake is pretty damn good.

        It feels exactly like a Quake game should feel, if you know what I mean. I’ve been playing it on and off since the first closed beta and the netcode and balance is improving all the time. By the time they release it, it should be in great shape.

        Plus it already has 5 times the playerbase of Lawbreakers, meaning you aren’t waiting around forever for games.

        • Premium User Badge

          particlese says:

          Oh, good to hear! I loved the feel of it but was pretty bad at actually playing*, so I’ll have to give Champions a try to see if the matchmaking and maybe the class stuff make it more fun for me online.

          *and I recently confirmed that I’m still awful against even normal Q3A bots

    • Unclepauly says:

      Except neither of those games do it better. Firstly because neither of them even do it. Neither game you’re talking about has air combat

  6. Premium User Badge

    particlese says:

    Well I’ll be darned. They do kinda desperately need to at this point, but it’s still worth saying that they actually seem to be listening.

    The existing quick video blurbs about each class and game mode are at best vaguely informative even after you’ve played a bit, and those, combined with an initially half-broken single player mode in one map with static bots, are no excuse for a “tutorial”. Anything they can do to improve that up is welcome, and it sounds like they probably understand that now. We’ll see.

    Also, this update announcement has a much humbler tone than their usual period. every. word. schtick, which is more than welcome, in my view. They even mention rebooting the near-absent marketing effort, which is good to hear given the word of mouth approach apparently largely relied on so far isn’t really working in a positive direction for them. (See the LOL FIRST comments here, for example.) I myself am biased toward positive commenting in part to offset the negativity a little, but it really can be a fun game despite the legitimate complaints.

    Now, regarding the new main-game content, I don’t think it’ll help new players learn any faster, especially given the current dearth of learning tools, but the variety should certainly help keep those already playing interested, and hopefully help attract those who see the available content as anemic for the 30-moneydollar pricetag. (I’ve had my $30 fun already, but it’s no “let’s see” pocket change in general, for sure. They need a free weekend after this stuff’s out.) Also, I love the look of that new Valhalla map, so \o/

    I really hope this work they’re doing helps boost the player base, as Lawbreakers can be a real blast when the teams are well balanced and the players know at least a little about what to do other than SHOT THE MANS. (For example, I had a completely awesome and exhausting 20-minute uplink match last night, following a similarly excellent blitzball match, but those came after a couple short ones where one team was just playing deathmatch.) Actual tutorials (and I suppose the actual team deathmatch mode) should help the cases of people not knowing or wanting to go after objectives, and more players should help the really fun matches happen more often. Here’s hoping!

    Thanks for the post, particularly since I’ve gone back to avoiding their announcements and “marketing” recently. :)

  7. Ogun says:

    Is it too late to change the name? ‘LawBreakers’ seems like a bad name.

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