Red 5 Studios Sets PAX Prime Ablaze With Firefall
Red 5 Studios took to the showroom floor this past weekend with their stellar PC shooter, Firefall. I had the opportunity to chat one-on-one with Lead Designer Scott Youngblood, who gave me a taste of what the latest update had in store for players as well as the all new Limited Edition Founders Package. This free-to-play game has not only evolved from a development standpoint, but easily positions itself to challenge what the traditionally defined “AAA” title is.
Scott Youngblood – Lead Designer
One of the first things Scott was eager to show off was the new “Tech Trees”. Having changed the leveling up process, this feature allows players to dig down deep with respect to character customization. Knowing that everyone’s play style varies, this gives users the chance to choose a path to assign upgrades. Whether your focus is on player mobility or increasing the amount of damaged delivered to your opponents, allocating your earned XP is completely up to you.
Another huge step forward for the studio is the recent implementation of Firefall’s in-game store. With any free-to-play title, there is always concern over how the development team maintains not only momentum, but sustainability. I mean let’s face it, these guys require compensation for the countless hours of work and continued support of the game YOU love to play. Achieving this through the in-game store, which allows players to purchase XP boosts, pets, and other aesthetic items, does just that. These low cost additions serve not only as an income generator for Red 5, but offers players and fans to get their hands on extensions of the game, all to heighten the user experience.
Firefall Mobile Gaming Unit
Another topic we covered was that of the “E-Sports” arena. Not only has the popularity of the game increased, but setting it up for this platform simply makes sense. With the massive number of gamers who either compete or even stream from home, this seemed like the next logical step for the studio. So much so in fact, that Firefall now has the twitch.tv element integrated right into the client itself. This opens the doors to unlimited possibilities and positions Red 5 to take this title to the next level and beyond. One of the coolest things they show up to this event with was the Firefall Mobile Gaming Unit (picture above). Unfortunately do to time constraints, I didn’t get a chance to tour this monstrosity, but believe me when I tell you, this is one vehicle you don’t wanna mess with! It’s stacked with 20 AMD powered gaming stations, Razer peripherals, and support for a 1,000 person LAN party. With livestreaming capabilities and full shoutcaster support, this defines gaming on the go.
FireFall MegaPatch Trailer At PAX Prime 2012
The above trailer digs down deep into the recent changes to the game and discusses in greater detail, the tech tree, core combat, player progression, and crafting. VP of Development James Macauley breaks down the specifics and shows players how the new features will change the way Firefall is played. While there is a lot of information to absorb, there’s no reason to be overwhelmed. Scott has assured me that many efforts have been made to accommodate ”novice” PC gamers like myself. Removing the barriers to entry on a game like this is important. As he called it, the “new user experience for noobs”, allows players from any skill level to jump in an enjoy the game.
FireFall Behind The Scenes At PAX Prime 2012
It’s not very often that attendees or viewers at home get the chance to get a behind the scenes look at what it takes to prepare for an event such as PAX. With hours upon hours of work from some of the most dedicated staff you will ever see, this crew walks you through the process and shows what it takes to put this all together. The end result is a finished product that will blow you away.
PAX Prime 2012 Booth Photos
Firefall’s invite-only Beta will continue to roll out through the rest of the year. While fans who stopped by the booth at PAX received and invite to join in, you too can sign up to be a part of one of the most incredible PC shooters every by visiting their website HERE.
A HUGE thank you to Red 5 Studio’s Lead Designer Scott Youngblood, for taking the time to talk with Kona’s Korner.