Previously at Valve Games writing games such as Left 4 Dead and Portal, Chet Faliszek has teamed up with Riot Games designer, Dr Kimberly Voll to start a brand new studio called Stray Bombay. And they have just announced their first project.
Recently revealed at the Reboot Develop conference in Canada, Faliszek announced that their studio will be making a “first-person network shooter“. This comes as no surprise looking at the games that Faliszek specialises in. He has also mentioned that the studio will be focusing on co-op games that bring people together.
Voll, who has worked on Fantastic Contraption, is an expert on AI and player psychology. Combining the two strengths of these gaming giants is the intended goal for the new shooter, focusing their matchmaking on player behaviour instead of skill.
First reported by VG247, Faliszek said: “For us, the metrics are about social, it’s not about skill.” Instead of asking players to send a friend request after playing only one game with each other, the game will provide opportunities for you to play again and develop that relationship organically.
“These people played four games together and they won so let’s have the game go crazy against them, let’s give them something that will kick their asses. We can make it easier and harder, because if we’re tracking them over sessions we understand them,” said Faliszek. “Nobody has done social matchmaking quite to the extent that we’re doing it. When you have a normal lobby of four people you have to make that split-second decision of do I like that person’s name? No. I’m going to drop out of this. Then you keep getting the empty lobby or the one person lobby problem.”
Using the Unreal engine, the game is set to provide 20-30 minute exciting play sessions but players can’t create their own character or upgrade them over time. According to Faliszek, “we wanted to remove all technical risk. We use Unreal. We are going to ship a game that does not break ground with any new technology at all.”
The game may not be anything astounding in terms of ground-breaking technology but it certainly is interesting to imagine a more socially-responsive game, especially for a first-person shooter. If successful, this could be a huge break for Stray Bombay.