October 23rd, 2012 | By Tom Christiansen
Forced is a fast-paced co-op gladiatorial combat game currently under development by Beta Dwarf, a small team based out of Denmark. The game has some similarities to Diablo, but has a much stronger focus on teamwork.
The story behind Forced is that in a small village in a distant land, a band of heroes were raised and now they must face the trials in order to leave the village and set out on their own. The only bothersome part: no one has ever made it back from the trials. Players have quite the task ahead of them, if they are to see their hero through the end of the bloody gauntlet.
Beta Dwarf wants players to know that the game was built from the ground up, with co-op in mind. The developers are going through every detail to ensure that the game is fun not only for 2-player gameplay, but 3-player, 4-player, and solo gameplay as well. This means that Beta Dwarf is essentially making four different games, three for the three different co-op modes, and the fourth version for those playing Forced alone.
Forced features four different weapon classes, each with sixteen unlockable abilities. The Volcanic Hammer, Frost Sheild, Spirit Blades, and the Storm Bow offer unique abilities that can benefit from and support the use of any of the other weapons, in conjunction with their own abilities. A specialized combat system rewards cooperation and teamwork. For example, some attacks can be timed with another player’s attacks so that they deal extra damage, and simultaneously knock-back foes; let the archer mark targets, and let the melee run in for a power-slam.
There are no random number generators in Forced. No lucky one-hit-kill critical hits, and no unlucky one-hit-deaths for the player. Everything done in Forced is determined by the players skills and how well they tactically work together, or on their own. Tactics are essential, because Beta Dwarf claims their A.I. units that players will face are capable of formulating strategies of their own, like surrounds, sidestepping attacks, and attempting to separate groups of player to try and isolate one away from the other. That last bit is rather terrifying.
Beta Dwarf turned to Kickstarter to help fund the last leg of their development journey. They are currently offering discounts to their pricing tiers, for donating early: get the $30 reward tier for $25, for example.
Forced is expected to launch for PC, Mac, Linux, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3, sometime in early 2013, with the exact date, still to be determined. Visit Forced’s official website and checkout the game’s Kickstarter page. Follow Beta Dwarf on Twitter.