We tested Ubisoft Montreal’s new Battle Royale FPS, Hyper Scape. This is the commitment of the French company to achieve a presence in the genre.
There have been more than a few contenders who have thrown themselves into the battle royale ring. Ubisoft does the same this summer with Hyper Scape, led by Ubisoft Montreal in collaboration with Ubisoft Barcelona, Chengdu, Pune, Saguenay and Ukraine. That Montreal is behind indicates the relevance of the title in the French company’s plan for this 2020 and beyond.
Hyper Scape is presented to us as the only battle royale FPS and F2P in a futuristic urban setting. After having participated in its first game session, at FreeGameTips we offer you the first details of the new Ubisoft game for this second half of the year.
Feel free in Neo Arcadia
We are in the year 2054. Digital fun has moved into a unique space in parallel with the real world. The Hyper Scape, as they call it, serves as entertainment in a society occupied by daily work. A virtual map takes us through several key scenarios of Western European architecture. We can see buildings like Notre Dame, which will serve as meeting points where we can find the best possible team.
Being an unprecedented intellectual property to date allows you to mold a unique, different structure. And that’s how it feels at the controls. Its managers insist on the relevance of their way of interpreting the genre. We are facing a “fast paced battle royale”. There are no similar shooters in your project portfolio. This is something that breaks with their formulas already seen in Far Cry, Rainbow Six and derivatives.
The first trailer shown to us recalls, bridging the gap, a hybrid of Titanfall with the Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 skill chain. Move, shoot, use skills, and run away. A whole process of movements that are offered to the player consciously. You have in your possession the necessary tools to create your madness on stage.
This way of breaking with what is established is transferred to the player structure. Each of the heroes will be able to have two weapons and hacks, unique abilities scattered across the map. These modifiers allow you to build your own build in real time, so you can choose how you want to get around the stage alone or with your allies.
Break with tradition
In Hyper Scape you will find a single vitality bar. It’s that simple. Neither shields nor armor. Zero. You must choose through the hacks your style of play: walls that stop the advance of the enemy, areas of healing, a ball that bounces around the stage as a panic button, a blow to the ground from the air that reminds us of those made in Halo 5: Guardians, among others.
There will be no inventories. The action does not stop at any time, even to get new equipment. You only need two buttons to activate the two hacks, another to change weapons, your fire button and the aim button. Nothing else. The equipment undoes the classic system of rarities in its bid to achieve something unique.
When you find a weapon already in your possession, you can collect it to improve your current version. You can do it up to four times, when you manage to get your ultimate weapon. Increasing your performance is key if you want to reach the last parts of the game in the best possible state. This system extends to hacks. During the technical test nine very different weapons will be available. For example, there will only be one assault rifle, while the other automatic machine gun is a gatling. They are joined by shotguns, snipers, power grenade launchers, and other weapons far from generic ballistics.
The medium-sized map is reduced differently than usual. We give way to disintegration, a progressive advance that will randomly affect the nine available districts. We will know that one will be affected by seeing a layer of black granule, as if it were noise in the image. Staying inside a collapsed district works the same way as circles on its rivals, only here it happens asymmetrically.
Death is not the end. Although in Call of Duty: Warzone we may have an opportunity surviving in the Gulag, here we will continue to control our character … from the other side. We can guide our colleagues in real time from a privileged perspective, as if we were still there. To resurrect, we must go to a resurrection platform that enemies leave when they die. Of course, we need the help of a partner to complete the return to the game.
The games, which will be suitable for solo or trio queues, will vary depending on the game mode available. The race for the crown is the main one, a classic survival mode in which when a small number of participants remain, the final fight begins. A crown will appear in a certain place, and players will have to try to survive to get it. Whoever keeps it equipped for forty seconds wins. Either that, or everyone dies trying. On the other hand, Dark Haze reduces visibility on the map. The team promises more game modes in the future.
A digital show
It could almost be said that it brings its gameplay to the show, towards those who carefully observe the performance of users behind the screen. So it’s no wonder that Ubisoft has joined forces with Twitch. The game will have a huge social component among streamers and their viewers. During games a random event may occur that changes the way you play for a few minutes. In one example, participants were seen fighting in zero gravity; That it be chosen is the decision of a vote through the platform.
On the other hand, those who watch the game will be able to link their Uplay account to gain experience of the battle pass, in addition to the possibility of joining the group of your favorite streamer with the push of a button. Something that Google Stadia already flirted with during its presentation.
Hyper Scape is targeting PS4, Xbox One and PC, although it will be in the latter where it begins its path in the market. It will be from now on through a limited technical test. From July 2 to 7 a private program will be open in which players can apply to their first dive to Neo Arcadia. Although the content is limited, you will be able to find 10 free levels of the battle pass, nine weapons and hacks and two game modes. The progress of the pass will be kept in your profile.
This technical test, as its managers say, is designed to collect as much feedback as possible from the community. They want the journey to launch to be alongside their followers, so the final stages of their development will be influenced by the feedback they receive. The champions, the faces of established characters, will have their own background. A universe that they want to expand as the seasons go by, in the same way that has happened with Rainbow Six: Siege.
The truth is that the impressions of this technical test have left us very good feelings. That game speed contrasts with the main genre rivals. In Fortnite, for example, skill is determined by how well you build in the shortest amount of time; in Call of Duty: Warzone, for your skill with weaponry and how you have molded it; in Hyper Scape, because of the way you move and take advantage of your hacks.
In the Infinity Ward game, the progression curve in a game is relatively short. Already from the 20 seconds before closing the first circle you are awarded a team pack at a point close to your position. Practically in the first 5 minutes of departure you can take your class defined, along with the advantages of the competitive one. In Hyper Scape, looting to the end of the game is rewarded thanks to the update system. Little by little you are chaining new improvements that allow you to grow over the minutes, something more natural than simply having your personalized Grau 5.56.
It is not without problems. Problems typical of a game in the process of evolution. The time for death seems excessively high to us, especially for the little damage that certain weapons do. The sniper rifle, for example, doesn’t reward as well as a torso shot should. The impact boxes are just the right size, and there are hardly any aids in the magnetism of the bullet. It is very competitive in this regard, but the damage ratio should be according to what you do, especially because of how agile moving bodies are.
We also feel that the equipment is currently unbalanced. It is too dependent on the main points of the districts. Following the example of Notre Dame, within them most of the confrontations are usually disputed after falling to the map, and they have a high probability of finding the most modified equipment. Beyond that, you must cling to clone interiors without any visual grace, nor in terms of design. We do not know if it is intentional, since in the end most of the combat is carried out outdoors, but we miss that these equippable objects appear in less limited locations.
That competitive edge is felt in very precise details, such as using a different sound for each type of impact (a shot in the head sounds hollow and powerful, while the torso can be heard being fired, the arms a little lower), or fill characters with commentary related to combat, plus a necessary active signal system in a genre that depends so much on the visual.
When you have all your cards on the table, it’s fun to rage. It is a game that needs your concentration to chain actions constantly. Get to a firefight, throw a grenade and if things don’t work go somewhere else thanks to your invisibility. The refresh rate of the hacks is very low, allowing this level of agility. We do not see it as an imbalance, quite the contrary: it is a way of pushing the speed of combat. And works.
At the moment, his monetization plan has not transpired, except for a battle pass that will be partially available in the technical test. It has not been specified whether there will be a cross game between the three versions, although for the moment they only aim to launch it in the first place on PC at some point this summer.
Hyper Scape is not just any battle royale. Bet on something different in an overcrowded field of proposals cut by the same pattern. It is really different, and from Ubisoft Montreal they know that this is the key to be able to gain a foothold. We will see how the study takes its next steps, already presented in society.