E3 2013: Madfinger explains its always-connected, community approach to zombie F2P shooter Dead Trigger 2
Shaking up the zombie apocalypse
As promised, during E3 2013 we found time to sit down with Czech developer Madfinger to talk about Dead Trigger 2.
And CEO Marek Rabas was very clear about the company’s goal for its zombie FPS.
“We wanted to continue the story and world from the original Dead Trigger, but this wasn’t just going to be a sequel with some new weapons and zombies,” he says.
Of course, it will have plenty of new weapons and zombies.
But the core for the from-the-ground-up free-to-play iOS and Android shooter (also available on Facebook and Steam via a single sign-on system) is building a real-time atmosphere for players to hook into.
“Let’s get this right. Dead Trigger 2 is not an MMOG but it has some elements,” says Rabas.
“Everybody who plays the game is doing their job together as part of the global resistance to zombies.”Heading places
How this will pan out is players will initially start out playing through a survival mode set in the US; sort of a tutorial.
Once completed, you will have a created your hideout that will be your link into the wider meta-game.
This will see players receiving real-time data about how many people are playing, how many zombies have been killed, how many NPCs have been rescued etc.
It will also enable access to special missions and over time reveal of the game’s story arc.
Indeed, every month a new location will become available (including new weapons, items, zombie types and missions), starting somewhere in Africa and then after a month switching to Asia.
These timed-events will encourage players to regularly come back to the game, but the US location will always be available.
Madfinger will be experimenting with more social and status aspects too, such as getting medals for the campaigns you complete, or being able to check out your friends’ weapon load-outs.
And interestingly - given the complaints about Xbox One - it will require an online connection to play.
There’s no news on multiplayer yet, but Madfinger is 'looking into it'.Free-fire zone
Rabas is also keen to point out that Dead Trigger 2 will be much more sophisiticated in terms of how it employs the free-to-play payment model.
“We hate freemium. We don’t want a paywall. We want people to have fun, not to be monetised,” he says.
“This game is about enjoyment. If players enjoy it, they will pay.”
In this context, the new game will offer more interesting gameplay.
“Dead Trigger could get a little repetitive, so we’re looking to have more special zombie types, different attack patterns and behaviours,” he reveals.
Madfinger is rolling out a new default control system, too.
“It sounds stupid,” Rabas says of the auto-fire mechanic. “But it’s really fun.”
You’ll still have the virtual twin-stick set-up for movement and camera control, but you’ll fire automatically when the cross-hairs target an enemy, making the game more about fluid movement than tight aiming.
Of course, other control options will be available in the settings and Dead Trigger 2 will support a range of Android unconsoles, including Ouya and Nvidia’s Shield, plus Android gamepads, and now gamepads for iOS devices.
It will also use the Everyplay video clip sharing system so you can see how other players are dealing with the action.
Due for release in the late summer, Dead Trigger 2 will be simultaneous out on iOS and Android, and be free with in-app purchases.