The Next Two Heroes
At least two more heroes are coming to Raw Data by the time the game launches, and possibly even more than that, says Iliff.
Street Mercenary – Shotgun
The Street Mercenary will wield the deadly shotgun and also use his fists for brawling with enemies who get even closer. One of the mercs planned unlocks is a grenade launcher augmentation for his shotgun.
Rogue Hunter – Bow
Then there’s the Rogue Hunter who will wield a bow. Iliff described him as an “older hooded guy with a beard” who has “lots of tricks with his compound bow.” The hunter excels at ranged combat and will be able to cloak to prevent enemies from targeting him. Iliff says that the team is experimenting with different types of arrows to give the hunter unique utility. One can imagine homing arrows, multi arrows, penetrating arrows, and plenty more.
Earlier iterations of Raw Data had players standing in one place as waves of enemies came to them. But Iliff says that movement is vital to Raw Data’s frenetic combat. For the Early Access launch, Survios has settled on a dash mechanic. This differs from a blink/teleport by letting the user see the world move around them (albeit quickly to avoid the potential for nausea). Iliff says that they picked dashing because it helps players maintain their orientation in the midst of combat.
“We experimented with blinking and fades but users would get confused,” he said. “[With dashing] when you’re in that combat, if you can dash across the map, you can time it perfectly and position it perfectly and teleport right behind a guy and take him out with a sword.”
Players will only be able to dash a short distance at a time in most cases, though there will be beacons located on the map that can be dashed to at any distance, making for quick traversal to strategic points. Iliff tells me that they’re considering adding optional stick movement for players who don’t get sick from that type of locomotion.
Objective and Meta Game
The objective of any Raw Data level is to defend the data core from hordes of enemies. Players will do so across 4 levels in Early Access, and 12 levels when the game hits its full release. Iliff says that these levels are not merely different set dressing, but a campaign and story for players to experience.
While unlocking hero abilities will give players progression throughout the campaign, there’s also a meta game that happens in each round as players are able to purchase and strategically place turrets to aid in their defense of the data core.
Oculus Rift Support and What’s Next for Survios
When I asked Iliff about whether or not Raw Data would see Rift support, he said “We’re a platform agnostic studio, so we want to support them in the future, but currently our focus is on Vive.”
As Oculus isn’t planning to ship their Touch VR controllers until Q4 2016, it’s understandable that Suvrios is focusing on the Vive when it comes to Raw Data. Once Touch does launch, there’s still questions as to if/how Raw Data could be adapted for the front-facing gameplay which Oculus is encouraging.
Iliff says that the studio hopes to have the full version of Raw Data out the door before the end of 2016. As for what else the studio is working on, he confirmed that other titles are in the works, but would only leave me with this tease:
“We aren’t announcing [other titles] at the moment. But I think it’s going to be some really cool stuff, and we’re doing stuff that has nothing to do with guns and violence—as much as I like that stuff—there’s lots of other cool genres we can work on.”
For those of you that have read this far, you deserve to know that there’s two Steam keys for Raw Data hiding somewhere in the article above.