Dust 514, a multiplayer FPS set in the EVE Online universe, was created in 2013, by CCP Games, but it was a fairly standard PS3, although with some intriguing links to the developer''s long-running space MMO, including letting EVE pilots on PC call in orbital strikes to assist Dust players on the ground below.
In 2014, CCP revealed Project Legion, a strategy to connect Dust 514 to PC and expand on its connections with EVE Online. It never made sense, however. In 2016, Project Nova, which I played an early prototype, reminded me a lot of traditional fast-paced shooters like Quake 3.
CCP is again striving to conquer the FPS genre in 2022. At this year''s EVE Fanfesta celebration of everything EVE conducted at CCP''s home of Reykjavik, Icelandthe company reveals that it once again wanted to combine multiplayer shooting and EVE''s far future setting, New Eden. This project does not even have a name.
Despite fans at Fanfest being informed that the game is unannounced, there is a lot of support information, including a bare-bones FAQ, and some concept art. It exists, but it does. I sat down with Adrian Blunt, attempting my damndest to obtain some clear findings.
"We''ve made a very conscious decision not to talk about the game until we can show it," he adds in the first of several short remarks. "We want it to be fleshed out so we may really talk about it and share it with the world. We''re chomping at the bit to be able to do that, but we''re holding it until then."
George Kelion, the head of PR at CCP, expresses gratitude to the community for the information. "Every week I receive emails from Dust 514 or Project Nova," he says. "It''s still officially unannounced, but CCP London''s FPS project is in a good manner where we feel comfortable saying it''s a project we''re working on."
A clunky press release reveals both these emotions. "CCP London is working on an unannounced online tactical FPS game set in New Eden." "We''re committed to providing an innovative multiplayer shooter with atmospheric visuals. We''re looking forward to revealing the game when we''re ready to do so."
I''m in a strange situation here, interviewing one of the lead on a game that he, the studio, and CCP themselves were all well-known to yet. I also ask Blunt how much of this new game, if anything, is built on the bones of previous CCP FPS attempts, such as Dust, Legion, and Nova.
"We''ve learned a lot from previous games," he says. "We recognize that there is a huge opportunity for an FPS set in the EVE universe. We''ve learned from all of that, but this is an entirely ground-up concept." "What CCP London is looking at is it from scratch. A fresh start."
I press Blunt on CCP London''s repeated use of the term "atmospheric" to describe the game, posing the possibility of any other difference in the game. "We''re creating a really atmospheric game," says the author. "It''s going to have all the weight of the EVE universe."
"Also, atmosphere is a word with a variety of meanings, would you say?" This throwaway line makes me wonder if the game will see players swapping between zero and simulated gravity, perhaps activating airlocks to blow others out. All speculation, however.
I don''t get much else from the developer. EVE Online is an almost entirely player-driven universe, and I ask Blunt if this FPS will tap into that. "In all of the games I''ve made in the past, the most powerful stories are the ones made by players," he says. "So I think it''s very important that this element is in the games we make."
I''m curious how far along the game is, but I''m assuming that Blunt is very early in development, supposedly "in pre-production." CCP London is apparently looking at what was done in Dust 514, but is not aiming to create the same kind of game. "There''s a lot of learning to be taken from that game without doing the same thing again."
I gave it a shot. It remains to be seen whether this game will ever be released at the beginning of the day, but I have high hopes. CCP''s reticence to explicitly disclose anything (or even announce it) suggests it is being a lot more careful this time. The studio has cried wolf a few times in regards to its FPS projects, and I wonder what fate awaits this one.