You might think battle royale shooters are passé, but until we get a really good one in VR, it isn’t over yet. Enter Population: ONE, a newly announced VR battle royale from BigBox VR, the developers behind Smashbox Arena (2016).
On paper, Population: ONE certainly sounds ambitious, as it promises to deliver many of the elements seen in popular battle royale games such as Fortnite and PUBG along with a few other things too. On the game’s feature list: one square kilometer map, the ability to climb anything, jet packs, the ability to build defensive structures, and even the addition of single player missions.
Some of this traversal tech, namely the flying and climbing, is being couched as the studio’s own ‘FreeMotion’ scheme, although the team hasn’t specified exactly how any of it differs from standard VR locomotion methods yet.
With its emphasis on realism, it also marks a stark departure from the company’s previous shooter, Smashbox Arena, which used cartoony characters and fictitious plasma ball guns.
Smashbox Arena however fared very well in comparison to many other VR multiplayer games, which sometimes languish with low hourly active user numbers, creating a downward spiral into empty severs and essentially a dead game. Hopefully some of this valuable multiplayer know-how will make its was into Population: ONE as well.
info is still thin on the ground, so there’s plenty more to learn about Population: ONE before we can tell where the game’s headed exactly.
BigBox is currently taking sign-ups for a closed beta, which they say will come sometime in 2019. The game is said to include cross-play for Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and Windows VR headsets.