At PAX Prime, Red 5 Studios announced FireFall, a new team-based shooter created by Mark Kern, who led development on World of Warcraft at Blizzard, and Scott Youngblood, former lead designer of Tribes.
While it’s not described as an MMO in the press release, it does say FireFall brings “hundreds of players together” into a “dynamic open world combining intense competitive multiplayer and large-scale cooperative gameplay.” FireFall is set on a devastated Earth 200 years in the future, and has survivors battling against a race called “The Chosen,” which are trying to destroy humanity. The game’s twist on team-based shooters is the use of “battleframes,” items players can equip and then customize to make their character into a class that suits their play style.
“When I founded Red 5, I knew I wanted to do something different than anything I’d done before,” said Kern, who also acts as Red 5’s CEO and chief creative officer. “I wanted to take the best of what I learned making online games and bring that to skill-based shooters.”
Red 5 is going with a free-to-play, microtransaction model for FireFall, allowing players to “experience every detail of the vibrant world without having to pay a penny” (including any additional content like updates and dynamic world events), while also offering premium “optional enhancements” players can purchase in a marketplace.
Firefall is planned for release near the end of 2011, and Red 5 is accepting beta applications at the game’s official website now.