Everything you need to know about the Bangladeshi multiplayer FPS Zero Hour
Game development in Bangladesh has come a long way. In half a decade, we went from Hatirjheel Dream Begins to Zero Hour, a multiplayer online game devolved by two indigenous game studios. We sat down with Nayeem Bin Haasan, director of Attrito, to get an idea of what to expect from their upcoming game.
What is it?
Zero Hour an online team-based tactical FPS jointly devolved by M7 Productions and Attrito. Players will battle each other as part of 5v5 teams in a variety of locations, all in Bangladesh. One team will consist of the law enforcers from the fictional MS Unit-9, whose job will be to rescue the hostage and defuse the bomb. The other team, the terrorists, has to stop them from doing so.
So it's a clone of Counter Six: Global Siege?
Not quite. Unlike the other games in the genre, Zero Hour puts a lot more focus on stealth, planning, and coordination. Your typical run and gun play style won't work, nor can you just blow a hole in the walls. The gameplay is more reminiscent to the 2005 SWAT 4 multiplayer, or if you played it on singleplayer only, the bank robbery level. The defenders can place the hostage in a room of their choice and have to defend him for a set period of time. To win, the assaulting team either has to either eliminate all the defenders or defuse the hostage's bomb vest before the timer runs out. The attackers have multiple vectors of approach and can plan their advance before the match starts.
How do I play?
The attacking team will have a variety of ways to approach the situation, while the defending team will have a similar number of options to deter them. All the floors in the building are scaleable, meaning the attackers can sneak up with a few floors with their rappel guns and hit the defenders from an unexpected approach. On the other hand, the defenders can place surveillance cameras on undefended corridors and can lay explosive traps. For an added challenge, either side can kill all power in the building, bringing visibility down to almost zero. Loadout management also plays a critical role, as players will have the choice to "steal" the loadout of a downed player, with the stolen loadout being carried over to the next round.
Free to play?
No, there will a fixed price. The developers are yet to disclose the official price but are confident it will be "very affordable". There are currently no plans to introduce microtransactions, meaning users only have to worry about a one-time payment. Something that is frankly, a refreshing change from the never-ending microtransaction found in other AAA games of similar genera.
Who's making this?
The game is currently being made by a small team of 33. Despite being a small team and having access to the Unity warehouse, the team claims to have developed all their asset in-house. An impressive achievement, considering the sheer amount of asset flips typically found on Steam. The team is also working on another game, named Agontuk, a sci-fi open-world game set in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
When can I play it?
The game is scheduled to come on Steam out next month. It is currently on closed beta and interested folks can check the game out on twitch.tv, as several of the testers are steaming their gameplay.