In a market where first-person shooters are a dime a dozen, Embark Studios is trying to bring something brand new to the table with The Finals.
It is an upcoming fast-paced first-person shooter that combines game-show elements where you “compete for worldwide fame.” Doesn’t sound special? Well, it has a fully destructible environment, in which players can wreak havoc, in Red Faction: Guerrilla style.
Who are the developers?
As mentioned earlier, the game is being developed by Embark Studios a company founded by a group of veterans of the gaming industry, who formerly worked for DICE, the company behind the Battlefield games.
Some of the developers are also former DICE employees. So it really shouldn’t come as a surprise that the people who worked on Battlefield are now working on their very own multiplayer FPS with a destructible environment.
Setting and gameplay
You play as a contestant in a hyper-realistic VR game show where, contestants fight each other for money, sponsors, and fame while a massive audience watches them.
So far the developers have confirmed two game modes that will be in the game: Cash out and Ranked Tournament.
In Cashout, four teams of three will compete against each other where they have to collect cash boxes and deposit them at a cash station. There, they will have to defend the point until the cash has been extracted. Other players can steal the cash being extracted if they take hold of the point and the team with the most money at the end of the timer wins.
There is a variation of this mode called the Knockout mode where there are multiple rounds and at the end of each, the team with the lowest cash gets eliminated.
Ranked Tournament is pretty simple. It’s a 4 match game where 16 teams participate in knockout modes.
While the game modes aren’t innovative, the destruction physics can add a whole new layer of strategy to the game. Players can blow up ceilings causing them to fall on their enemies, or they can create some debris that they could use as cover. The possibilities are endless.
How good is the destruction physics?
Like in the Battlefield games, players can destroy entire buildings and even skyscrapers in The Finals, but unlike Battlefield’s Levolution mechanic, which executes scripted events causing the said building to collapse in the same way each time, The Finals has a more organic and dynamic destruction system.
This is more akin to the destruction physics of Battlefield’s smaller buildings, but even there, The Finals is more advanced. The load-bearing elements of many structures are static in Battlefield which sometimes prevents players from being able to completely destroy the building.
In The Finals, because the destruction is purely physics-based, the player will have to actually hit the critical support points of said building. The building won’t collapse just because the player has done enough damage to it. Buildings can also be taken out level by level.
To put it simply, The Final’s destruction physics is Red Faction: Guerrilla’s destruction physics times ten. If you can see it, you can destroy it. The Finals is able to achieve this by what Embark Studios call the “server-side” system.
This basically means, that all of the movement and destruction that happens in the game takes place in the servers and not in the hardware of the players because of which all the players will be able to see and experience the exact same thing.
The downside to this system however is that the game is as good as dead if the servers are closed down. Whereas in games like Call of Duty, players will still be able to create and play offline matches with bots.
No official release date has been revealed, though Embark Studios has confirmed that a beta for the game is starting in March on Steam, which players can sign up for.