March 10th, 2013 | By Tom Christiansen
Using some of the best graphics software available to developers, Mountainwheel Games is bringing the Stone Age, to gamers, later this year. Stone Rage is set to be a free-to-play, third-person, multiplayer action game where players are divided into three teams: humans, neanderthals, and animals. Each team will have distinct abilities and classes for players to master, as they compete for victory across Stone Rage’s beautiful looking maps. With CryEngine 3 backing up the graphics department, even in it’s earliest forms, Stone Rage looks amazing.
Earlier this year I interviewed Isaac James, Stone Rage’s game designer. We talked at large about the team’s overall plans for Stone Rage. One of the first things I asked Isaac is what the difference between the human and neanderthal teams, will be.
“The class specifics are to be determined,” Isaac explained. “The big difference we’re playing with right now is that humans are encouraged to work together and neanderthals compete with each other for kills.”
Along with the humanoid teams, there is the animal team that will allow players to control various prehistoric animals, and utilize their natural advantages to counter their weaponized enemies. So far, Mountainwheel Games has revealed that they plan on having an Entelodont (boar), a Wolly Rhinoceros, a Gastornis (ostrich-like bird), a cave bear, a Saber-tooth Tiger, and a mammoth, available on the animal team.
“Animals tend to have movement-focused abilities and really disruptive melee-range abilities,” Isaac told me. ” We’ve got some crazy ones planned, like a bear biting off someone’s head and a [mammoth] smashing a foe into a tree.”
Stone Rage is planned to be a free-to-play game, and last I spoke to the team, they planned on monetizing unlockables, but Issac assured me that only aesthetic items and some boosts (increased XP gain, higher currency find for unlockables), will require a purchase. Everything else (classes and weapons) will be able to be unlocked eventually by non-paying players.
In an industry that is nearly dominated by games that rely heavily on modern or futuristic settings, it is nice to see a developer go the opposite direction in time, and be able to make something that looks to be just as fun as its alien-and-laser brethren.