Battle royale videogames like Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds and Fortnite are a very big deal right now. Encouraging careful manoeuvring, tactical thinking of great aiming skills along with a bit of luck. Developer BigBox are looking to bring that manic action to virtual reality (VR) with Population: ONE.
In Population: ONE, players are dropped into an expansive, one square kilometer area where they will need to fight, explore and loot in order to beat your opponents and survive in order to claim victory.
VR multiplayer titles are slowly gaining in popularity as players and developers seek more social experiences in VR. Population: ONE tries to deliver this by offering cross-play between HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Windows Mixed Reality devices, or players can play online as a solo act, completing single-player missions and practising against AI robots and drones.
Players in Population: ONE can climb any tall structure in order to get the lay of the land and gain a tactical advantage. They can also travel long distances using jetpack-like devices, or construct a fortress to keep themselves safe.
The facilitate these gameplay options, the development team have created a movement system called FreeMotion. The development team say that extensive research was conducted on player comfort to create a movement system that would allows players to climb, fly or run anywhere in VR while experiencing without discomfort.
BigBox previously explored VR development in its multiplayer arena shooter Smashbox Arena, a team-based first-person shooter that featured physics-driven power-ups. That title was first released on HTC Vive before being ported to Oculus Rift and then PlayStation VR.
At Gamescom 2018, Population: ONE was being demonstrated for attendees with an Oculus Rift system. Further information on the title can be found on the official Population: ONE website, which also offers the chance to join the private Beta.
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