Next year is going to be quite busy for the folks at Avalanche Studios. Not only will they be launching Rage 2, which they’re co-developing with id, but the Just Cause studio just announced its first self-published title, and it’s also set to launch in 2019.
Generation Zero is a co-op open-world action game set in an alternative version of 1980s Sweden in which robots are taking over the world. Up to four players can travel across the abandoned Swedish countryside, fighting enemies that look like the “dogs” from Black Mirror‘s “Metalhead” episode, reviving downed allies, and sharing the loot from a busted-up robot.
Along with announcing the game, Avalanche revealed some interesting gameplay details about Generation Zero. Enemies will bear persistent battle scars from the damage you’ve done to their robotic components, meaning they will show the same wear and tear the next time you face them, whether it’s “minutes, hours, or weeks later,” according to game’s official website. This persistence also applies to the game’s mission objectives, which “will remain where you left off.”
This also seems to hint that some enemies will be too difficult to take down the first time around, and that players will have to get creative when it comes to fighting Generation Zero‘s killer machines. Stealth and guerilla tactics will be key to surviving the dystopic Swedish landscape; the announcement mentions luring enemies into traps as a useful strategy for taking down enemies. But this is an Avalanche Studios game, after all, meaning there will be plenty of explosions to go around.
The announcement indicates that players will customize their characters in ’80s fashions. It’s unclear if there are more gameplay-related, RPG-style elements to this customization, but the website does mention that players can “combine your unique skills to take down enemies,” which makes it sound like some characters will have different strengths based on some sort of skill tree.
Generation Zero will be Avalanche’s first self-published title. This “creative freedom has allowed our small but brilliant team to double down on passion and develop an experience that we feel brings something unique to the table,” game director Emil Kraftling wrote in a blog post.
“As our first self-published action game, there has been no big publishers, license holders or other external stakeholders involved,” Kraftling wrote. “This is the studio’s game, the team’s game, and my game to an extent that we maybe haven’t had before. We are calling all the shots, but we are also taking all the risks. Some would probably say that an action game with tactical elements set in rural Sweden is a risk in and of itself, as opposed to—say—making a zombie survival battle royale game or something.”
Generation Zero is scheduled to launch sometime in 2019. Platforms have yet to be announced.