Splitgate was never meant to reach this size. The game that is free to play and feels like an Halo 3 and Portal collaboration was initially launched in the hope that it would one day see just a handful of thousand concurrent users and its sudden expansion has been “crazy,” says CEO and cofounder of 1047 games Ian Proul.
Today, with Splitgate established as a major player on the shooter scene 1047 Games has set its goals on AAA games such as Fortnite as well as Halo Infinite. Splitgate Season 1 is “step one of the process of turning it from an indie game into a true AAA behemoth,” Proul continues. This includes huge visual enhancements and a brand new battle pass, new game modes and a map editor that could be comparable to Halo’s Forge.
After watching all 1047’s achievements during the recently held Splitgate beta Season 1 preview, it sure appears that Splitgate is at the edge of becoming a AAA-class game. However, is an experience that was never designed to be this huge be able to keep pace with such games as Halo Infinite and Apex Legends? We’ll have to wait and watch and.
Splitgate is so great because it expertly blends the experience of two extremely excellent games in a manner that’s never been attempted before. The gunplay and motion gameplay mechanics in Halo 3 fit so well with portals of the Portal style that Splitgate is like an equivalent game to the charcuterie board, with cheese and meat perfectly.
Splitgate is an ideal illustration of the power of a well-designed and simple F2P title . I’m not able to say a word about the history of the game or the reason I’m in arenas where crowds cheer me on and cheering me on, but I don’t think I need to know that. I’m interested in how it feels to move (good) and how well the guns fire (great) and how unique this game is when compared to other popular F2P shooting games (very).
It’s no surprise that, once rumors of a brand new F2P shooter that used the same mechanics began to circulate quickly, the game was viewed as a viral hit. This caused massive server problems, with 1047 Games in no position to cope with the influx of interest and resulting in the delay of the release “for the foreseeable future” originally scheduled for August 2021 , so the team could concentrate to scale. Not just in game however, beyond it. The studio grew from two employees to a team of 50 people which included many employees in the past few months.
It takes a large team to achieve big things and Proul along with the other members of 1047 have some big ideas for Splitgate. This includes pushing the boundaries of their artistic style by creating a more distinct Splitgate style, something that was not possible prior to when the studio received 100 million dollars in capital. “A lot of this evolving into a AAA game is about creating a unique identity and a unique art style… We want to make something where you look at it, and you instantly see ‘Oh, that’s that Splitgate. That’s something I’ve never seen before’,” Proul says.
The larger team has been spending time on significant improvement in lighting and materials and are working hard to keep their distance from the what Proul describes as”a “Red vs Blue vibe” that they wish Splitgate to model. It is unclear if this is a deliberate reference to Halo or simply an ode to the teams’ colors of the opposing team isn’t clear, especially when Proul says that 1047 is examining particular AAA games to find ideas.
“I wouldn’t say there’s any specific game that we were like, ‘Oh, yeah, let’s go make this look like Call of Duty or Destiny or Fortnite or whatever’. We’re still exploring the art style. So for this first map, this is kind of our first iteration, we wanted to make something somewhat neutral so that we can get feedback, which will dictate, you know, do we go further in this direction? Do we pivot and slightly adjust?” Proul says. This is an interesting dilemma for Spitgate developers to tackle in the moment: how do an experience that clearly draws from two famous franchises become an individual entity?
Proul is confident that the team is ready for the challenge. For the forthcoming Season 1 launch, 1047 has updated the Forgone Destruct map to reflect the standard of visuals that we can expect in the future. The game is in the middle of Splitgate beta Season 1 with plenty of new content, too in an effort to allow it to be separated from all comparisons and create its own route ahead.
Splitgate Beta Season 1 will include all the characteristics of high-budget F2P games like Halo Infinite and Apex Legends The game will feature a new 100-level battle pass that features themes that are consistent across skins as well as a brand-new game mode known as Evolution and a brand new map, as well as an individual map creator that will assist in making an already active community active.
The creation of custom maps is an excellent example of how 1047 intends to draw on its community’s strengths to influence the growth of Splitgate. “For us, it’s all about the community. Our mentality with every feature is that we want to get it into the hands of our community as quickly as possible. As soon as we have that Version 1.0 of a feature, we’re putting it out there, because instead of us building on what we think players would want, we’d rather put it into their hands, get their feedback, and build it alongside them,” Proul says. Proul.
“That’s really kind of indicative of how we’re going about our map creator. And so with our map creator 1.0, there’s a lot of different directions we can take this in, but we feel like in this version 1.0 today, it is a powerful tool, you can make all sorts of crazy things and a lot of different directions we can take it in.”
With this map maker you’ll have different shapes and blocks available to construct your maps, and also options to set up objectives and play any game you’d like on the maps you design (and utilize bots). Also, Splitgate will allow you to build your map with up to eight other players in multiplayer. You can also upload and download any other maps created by users. For those who are new to building maps, Splitgate seems to have come up with a method to build maps that are user-friendly with an easy-to-use interface with the option to switch between building and testing quickly.
It’s obvious that the Splitgate development team already has an eye for what keeps an F2P game interesting and fresh. We’ll see this with the two new game modes that are coming along with Splitgate Season 1 – Evolution and One Flag Capture the Flag. Evolution begins players with pistols and fists and the player who wins the game is changed to carbine as well as one assault weapon. This creates an interesting scenario, since a dominant team will always win, however, they will consistently have the worst loadout . Expect wild games out of this type of game that works well for streamers.
In the case of One Flag CTF 1047 Games was unable to come up with a capture-the-flag mode that could work in a shooter with portals. “We’ve been kind of banging our heads against the walls for years,” Proul admits. “It’s kind of tricky. We’ve experimented with all sorts of things, we feel like we finally got a variant of capture the flag that plays really, really well.” The one flag, round-based mode will consist of short two-to-three minutes of rounds, with one team playing offense and the other team on defense. Flag carriers aren’t able to portal when they are in the flag carrier position, and once the offensive team takes the flag, defense won’t be able to portal either. This can help prevent lightning-fast CTF matches and is a indicator that 1047 Games has a clear understanding of what it’s doing in the field of Splitgate.
There’s plenty to anticipate with Splitgate Beta Season 1, with improved graphics, brand new skins, modes, and a new method to create fun with portals through the use of a map creator that you can customize. 1047 Games is really pushing the limits of this game as they try to move it into AAA status. Splitgate Beta Season 1, should be successful, will surely boost the quality of this shooter and make it more well-known than it is already.
The Splitgate Beta Season 1 launches today, 28 January for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.