Afterland is the story of a virtual reality center in Occitania which is embarking on the development of a game, a cross between Overwatch and Borderland, but which takes a step ahead by anchoring it on the blockchain. Two years after the first confinement, the game is finally ready (or almost). The machine is going to be launched, the video game makes a huge leap in Web3 with AfterLand. Thomas Rubio, its marketing director, was the guest of 20 Mints Squared August 9.
The term is known within the Web3 and video game community: Play-to-Earn (playing to earn money, often cryptocurrencies). It is a concept in which the player rarely takes pleasure from a video game point of view. How do you manage to offer a game that is above all pleasant to play and that integrates monetization mechanisms?
I’m going to take the question upside down, I’m going to start by presenting a little bit of what we do. With Hymersion, we don’t do Play-to-Earn, we have expertise in video game creation since 2017. We work with companies and develop games. From the beginning, our goal has always been to provide content that is always exclusive and also gives pleasure to every player. And this thanks to a meticulous work on the gameplay, the cooperation and the different game modes, etc. Play-to-Earn was a necessary step, because without it, ultimately, video games would not have been able to establish themselves on the blockchain so quickly.
Is creating a game for Web 3 very different?
What has really changed is our perception of the market. Because in Web 2, we find gaming with millions of users. It’s easy to offer a game to a community that’s already there. The difficulty finally, it is the stake which one proposes to the players, but there were not too many changes internally. The design of a game remains the same. We still have the expertise to model, create open worlds, texturize…
Can you introduce us to AfterLand? We are on an FPS which looks quite invigorating and quite dynamic in the gameplay. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
To present AfterLand is an FPS (a first person shooter) where different modes are offered: the first mode being the PvE (Player VS Environment), which will be a solo exploration, or with others. The goal will be to cross different maps by collecting teleportation crystals to summon a portal and discover a new world. When the game is officially released, there will be three worlds. To add to the challenge, there will be a countdown system: the longer you take to explore, the harder the enemies will be to defeat and the more dangerous the environment will become. Then there is the PvP mode (Player VS Player), which is the most competitive mode that is done in the arena. From the launch of the game, 1v1 and 2v2 will be available, and other team models will be implemented later.
When will the first beta be released?
She was supposed to arrive in September. But it is possible that we will release an exclusive for our ambassadors, a kind of pre-alpha version. We will therefore have during September, October, and November the open beta and closed beta versions. The official launch is scheduled for early 2023.
You were targeting quite different audiences: the hardcore gamer, the investor, a real component of Web3, but also the occasional gamer. How do you plan to satisfy everyone?
It is true that we wanted to integrate everyone. The PvE mode is a really affordable game mode for all types of players, especially since there will be different difficulty levels. For PvP, it will be the arena game mode that will bring together players wishing to train with each other and climb in a ranking. That’s why we wanted to make a difference between players who just want to explore and those who want to show their level. We also realized that there are a lot of people who are hooked on the project but who aren’t FPS players, and who don’t know if they will have the time to play it frequently. We have therefore set up three lobbies, which are virtual houses with particularities. The investor who will have a special NFT will be able to create all the essential resources for the game. When a player arrives in a world, he has nothing, so it will be complicated to move forward without looking for resources, improving his talents, etc Owners of this NFT will be able to create what players need and sell it. These investors will also be able to contract with players, who pay a portion of the winnings generated in exchange for unlimited games (one free game is available per day in the PvE mode.)
We are talking about a PC game as a priority, but who will integrate the mobile tomorrow?
Mobile development is scheduled for 2023. But it’s unclear how long that will take. We focus first on the PC version. Every six to seven months, we will develop a new map. So that means the game won’t really end. We are offering three at launch, a fourth will arrive very very soon.
Your starting DNA is virtual reality. Are you considering integrating 100% subjective view with a VR headset?
We are already thinking about it. Our interest is that we can also rethink the game for our different centres. It can also be interesting to offer AfterLand since we already have FPS in our virtual reality centers, but that’s something else again…