Best of Both: ‘Ground Branch’ Seeks Public Funding

Once a pioneering force in video game innovation, the first-person shooter has, by all accounts, garnered a reputation as being something of a damp squib – a cop-out for large publishers to flash their collective rods in the faces of megalomaniacal customers. That’s a situation that BlackFoot Studios, creators of military shooter Ground Branch, wish to remedy now that they’ve embarked on a public funding campaign via Kickstarter.

Comprised of former employees from both Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon creators Red Storm Entertainment and the ever-mercurial Valve Corporation, BlackFoot is intent on rekindling the classic tactical bunfights made famous by the likes of Rainbow Six, all whilst injecting an infectious strain of fresh modernity into the aged formula.

If customisation via the game’s intricate weapon and gear modelling systems is the game’s alluring aperitif, a meticulous attention to realism is its main course. Studio founder John Sonedecker, having spent spent a considerable amount of time plying his trade at the US Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg, Carolina’s John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School, is keen to use his extensive knowledge in the field of Special Operations training, weapon performance and field traversal as a basis on which to oversee the creation of one of the most true-to-life military gaming experiences to date.

Powered by Epic’s Unreal Engine 3, Ground Branch looks very much as though it’ll capture every inch of grit, sweat and bloodshed of the battlefield in a dazzling show of graphical prowess. Just savour those luscious interior and exterior environments and try to maintain a steady heart rate.

Perhaps Ground Branch‘s biggest kick in the nads of modern gaming convention is BlackFoot’s unapologetic rejection of commercially-motivated contributions to unbalanced gameplay mechanics. Gone are the DLC requirements, class restrictions and killstreak perks, and in their place is purported to be a fully-grounded, non-linear multiplayer experience that’s open to all, yet full of surprises.

BlackFoot is looking for a sizeable goal of $425,000 to bring its project to life, with a July 6th funding deadline set in place. If you would like to become an official backer, follow the steps outlined on the game’s Kickstarter page, where a veritable treasure trove of additional information is ready for your viewing pleasure.

IndieGameMag - IGM