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Romero & Carmack Return With FPS BLACKROOM

Back to basics

John Romero and Adrian Carmack, two of the founders of id Software, have reunited to work on a new FPS game. It's called BLACKROOM [official site] and it has just arrived on Kickstarter, seeking $700,000 of funding. As you might expect, Romero is pitching the game as a return to the principles that drove the original Doom and Quake. Rocket-jumping, circle-strafing and "expert abstract level design". All of the levels will be the work of Romero himself, though there will also be full modding and custom map support, and they'll take place across diverse environments thanks to a sci-fi plot involving holographic technology gone bad.

A reprisal of Romero's reversed speech at the end there, though this time it's not an instruction to kill him. The lack of in-game footage is most likely explained by the proposed release date, which is late 2018.

The proposal is for a game that is an unashamed attempt to shut up all those people who like to suck on their teeth and mutter, "They don't make 'em like they used to." Romero and Carmack want to make one like 'they' used to; 'they' being id themselves and the many developers inspired by those early FPS games. The Kickstarter campaign calls BLACKROOM "a return to fast, violent and masterful play on the PC".

There will be a single-player campaign to go with the various multiplayer modes (which are supported by dedicated servers). That should make use of the storyline's holographic tech to cover some interesting environments, and there's also mention of a device that can be used to 'hack' the environment. Quite how that'll work isn't clear.

Change your environment from within the game with the proprietary Boxel, a device only allocated to HOXAR engineers. Influence the environment, your weapons and your enemies.

Levels include "ruined Victorian mansions...Wild West ghost towns...treacherous pirate galleons" and more, and will be spread across a ten hour campaign and six multiplayer maps.

It's a long way off, but has grabbed my interest. I can't imagine it'll fail to hit the target thanks to name value alone, and hopefully we'll be able to keep a close eye on development as it progresses.

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Adam Smith

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