GamesBeat

Rumble signs Brazilian developer for free-to-play first-person shooter

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When you think of the best first-person shooter game developers in the world, Brazil doesn’t come to mind.

But Aquiris Game Studio wants to put the country on the map in the FPS universe, and Rumble Entertainment plans to make it happen. The company is announcing today that it will publish a shooter dubbed Ballistic that Aquiris has been developing for years. It will be free-to-play and digitally distributed for web browsers and Facebook. Ballistic is part of an ambitious effort to elevate the quality of digital-only releases so that they match traditionally boxed console and PC games.

ballistic 2Greg Richardson, chief executive of Redwood City, Calif.-based Rumble, said in an interview with GamesBeat that Ballistic will be the first title to be published under Rumble’s third-party publishing platform. Rumble will provide technology, tools, and know-how to web and mobile developers who want to reach digital audiences.

“We looked at more than 150 games as we did our evaluations,” Richardson said. “We want to work with the best indie developers who share our passion for great games. This sector of the market for premium games is very much in a boom.”

Ballistic is slated for release in the spring. As you can tell from the pictures, it has beautiful 3D graphics with sophisticated shadow and lighting effects. The game uses the Unity 3D engine from Unity Technologies. David Helgason, chief executive of Unity, provided the first contact between Aquiris and Rumble.

Richardson said that players will likely use a mouse and keyboard or a traditional controller. In contrast to other mobile titles, it is not a touchscreen game at the moment.

“Aquiris was looking for a publisher who shared our vision of delivering premium gaming experiences in the browser,” said Mauricio Longoni, chief executive of Aquiris in Porto Alegre, the fifth-largest city in Brazil. “Rumble understands the changing nature of publishing in the digital space, and as developers of top-tier web and mobile games themselves, they are uniquely positioned to extend their platform to and share knowledge with developers like Aquiris. Partnering with Rumble allows us to deliver a new benchmark for browser-based shooters.”

Rumble plans to provide the publishing services that will allow the game to scale up as its audience grows. It will offer social networking features, telemetry, analytics, customer support, and quality assurance testing.

Ballistic will not require gamers to download a large client before playing. It will give players a choice from an array of modern weapons and skills and put them to the test with frenetic action. Rumble and Aquiris have been working together for about eight months. Aquiris is planning to launch a closed beta test shortly.

Rumble is a new publisher focused on games for web browsers and Facebook. Its other announced titles include the upcoming tablet game Nightmare Guardians and another 3D adventure title dubbed KingsRoad. Nightmare Guardians is targeted for release in the first half of the year, and KingsRoad is nearing its open beta test.

Rumble has 50 employees and has raised almost $20 million to date from Google Ventures and Khosla Ventures. Aquiris has been working on multiplatform games for five years, with a focus on Unity 3D engine games.


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