Waiting for Horus: Multiplayers’ ball

A dream team of Montreal developers is hard at work on this minimal yet engaging online multiplayer game.

Montreal is sick with talented video game designers and programmers. Everyone on the island, along with their iOS-coding siblings, seems to be cobbling together little apps and inconspicuous games these days. But even the tiniest of projects can reveal itself to be a precious gem. A simple yet engaging online multiplayer game called Waiting for Horus is currently in the works by a dream team of Montreal developers: Devine Lu Linvega (Diluvium), Renaud Bédard (FEZ) and Henk Boom (FRACT).

Waiting for Horus is a third-person, fast-paced multiplayer arena shooter in which players inhabit badass-looking mechs, with the goal of taking out as many opponents as possible in five rounds (like any standard online game in the genre), utilizing either your run-of-the-mill, everyday machine gun or the über-macho pepper gun.

The game doesn’t tell a story, simply because there is no need for one. Its beauty lies in a simplistic approach that uses minimalist decor to provide natural charm. “I don’t want to give a shooter a story, like you wouldn’t give Quake III a story,” said Lu Linvega, who’s chiefly responsible for the aesthetic, graphics and thematic elements of the game. “I think our games always have a sense of playfulness to them, and that’s an interesting aspect when working with other developers.”

While Lu Linvega is in charge of the visuals, Bédard works on the integration of the effects and the server’s multiplayer code and Boom, the programming of the game’s controls. Their initial concept was to make something that reminded them of Phantom Crash (a classic on the original Xbox) where the goal of the game is unpretentious yet endlessly entertaining.

The game retains a fun and vivid core because of the theme Lu Linvega wanted to develop for it. The feel of the game is very primal with intentionally unpolished graphics. “I have mapped a few of my games with heavy textures, and it’s a bore. There are enough games like these, and I wanted to make something more interesting,” says Lu Linvega, in love with the minimalist look.

WFH, like many indie games, is currently supported by Steam Greenlight, which makes it available for players to vote for, effecting whether or not it will eventually be granted a full release on the popular digital distribution platform. It’s currently available as a free download for PC or Mac, but no date has been set yet for release of the finished product.

In the meantime, as they work toward their finished product and await its release, this rock-star team of indie devs have concocted a splendid and open approach to collect player’s feedback. They host public play tests on a regular basis, allowing fans to point out the bugs, while clueing them in to the fixes and optimal times to play the game on its official Facebook page and website. ■

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