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Intruder Alert! is an upcoming cooperative asymmetric multiplayer Real-Time Strategy Shooter; a standalone indie title powered by Unreal Engine 3. rM CommunitySteamTwitterFacebookYouTubeGoogle+Reddit

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We've answered a few preliminary questions we figured you'd likely ask, and we'll be updating this page with additional information over time. You can always find more information (or ask your own questions) on our Community Forums.

Last Updated: 03 Mar 2012 @ 01:15 UTC/GMT

[+] What is Intruder Alert!?

Intruder Alert! (or IA! for short) is redMatter's first (upcoming) standalone large-scale independent title for Windows and Mac. It is a cooperative asymmetric multiplayer Real-Time Strategy Shooter, powered by Unreal Engine 3.

IA! pits a team of GPs (Ground Players, playing cooperatively in third-person view) against one or more OPs (Overhead Players, commanding AI-controlled units and manipulating the environment around them from a top-down perspective). Read below for more information!

→ Why the name "Intruder Alert!"?

That will become much clearer in the coming weeks as we reveal more information about IA! (specifically its theme, art style, key features and level objectives).

[+] What is an Asymmetric Multiplayer RTSS (Real-Time Strategy Shooter)?

A mouthful is what it is! Let's break it down:

→ Real-Time Strategy Shooter

A Real-Time Strategy Shooter is a video game that combines elements from the Real-Time Strategy genre (e.g. SC2) with elements from either the First-Person Shooter (e.g. UT) or Third-Person Shooter (e.g. GoW) genres (or even both).

(Cooperative) Asymmetric Multiplayer

Most multiplayer games are symmetric: whether you play on one side or the other, you can expect to have the same set of equipment, skills and abilities as the other team (most of the time, the only difference between players on either side is the colour of their in-game character's gear).

IA! is an asymmetric multiplayer game: you'll be playing a very different game based on what side you choose. The GP side offers a purely TPS/FPS experience where you control a single in-game character, while the OP side offers an RTS gameplay experience where you command an army of AI-controlled units while also manipulating the environment around them.

As for the cooperative aspect, it simply means that players on the same side will have to work together to be able to advance in the level and defeat the enemy.

How does it all work? We'll soon be unveiling some IA! gameplay footage that'll show you exactly how the game manages to mix the different genres in this fashion. In the meantime, you can take a look at some of Overwatch's media or even download and play it for yourself to experience it firsthand (you can find more information about Overwatch below).

→ Overwatch, a Source-Powered Asymmetric Multiplayer RTSS

Overwatch is redMatter's first title. Like IA!, it is a cooperative asymmetric multiplayer RTSS but, unlike IA!, it is a Half-Life² modification (i.e. powered by the Source engine and set in the Half-Life² universe). Overwatch has been downloaded over 90,000 times in the last year, given a rating of 9.3/10 by 250 members of its community and nominated to ModDB's Top 100 Mods of 2010.

Overwatch serves as an excellent example of the kind of core gameplay you'll find in IA! (we consider IA! to be Overwatch's spiritual successor, since we're taking all the valuable lessons we've learned while developing Overwatch and using them to build a bigger, better and more complete game of the same genre).

Overwatch is only a small (but very fun!) taste of what you can expect to see, but it'll definitely give you an idea of the type of gameplay you'll find in IA!. We encourage you to read more about Overwatch on its ModDB profile and forums, and to download and play it while you wait for IA!'s first public release.

→ Additional Information

@Wikipedia: Real-Time Strategy, First-Person Shooter, Third-Person Shooter, Cooperative Gameplay

[+] What makes IA! fun and unique, and what are some of its key features?

The type of mixed gameplay that IA! offers is obviously one of its key features, but also one of the most difficult aspects to nail. Thankfully, we've learned a lot developing Overwatch (and other games over the years), so we have a solid plan in place to make it all work perfectly.

IA! is also being built from the ground up to offer plenty of customization options and a unique playing experience each and every round. From the way we have designed our levels to the vast variety of units and abilities available, players won't be able to predict how a round will play out.

Here is some preliminary information about a few of the other key features we plan to implement in IA! (we'll be talking about them more in detail in upcoming posts):

→ Player Customization and Loadouts

As we've mentioned earlier, one of the most exciting aspects of this type of gameplay is not knowing what to expect when you start a new round. Almost every feature we have planned for IA! helps ensure the uniqueness of every round, and two of those features are Player Customization and Player Loadouts.

We want each and every IA! player to be unique, both in the way they're represented in-game and with the arsenal they have at their disposal, no matter what side they're playing. We're aiming to allow players to customize the look of their avatars and to pick their own set of weapons, items, units and traps from a wide selection. You'll never be able to guess what you'll encounter!

→ GP Roles

Instead of classes, Overwatch introduced players to Roles. To understand roles, think of Kirby! In a single round, you can play as a medic, a defender, a tech or an infiltrator by simply picking up and dropping special role-specific items. Roles allow players to remain flexible on the playing field by assuming different roles as needed. Players with different roles will also be able to combine their unique abilities!

→ Traps

One of the most popular requests we've seen from Overwatch's community is a much bigger and better Traps feature. We definitely listened and, in IA!, OPs will be able to place traps (from their own preselected set) in the level at a location of their choosing, enable different kinds of sensors that will trigger those traps, and even combine several different traps into one big GP death trap.

→ OP Bosses

Another very popular request was for the OP to be able to control a single unit from a first-person or third-person view. While it wouldn't make sense to be able to control every unit in that fashion (as most units are expendable and quick to die), in IA!, OP players will have a Boss that they can control. The boss is a stronger unit with a limited set of special abilities that is used as a last resort. If the GPs manage to punch their way through all of the OP's defences and reach the final objective, the OP will fight them off with his boss in an epic battle!

→ Community-Made Content

While we'll definitely be doing our best to provide you with as much content as possible, we'll be building IA! with user-created content in mind. Both the game and our community site are being designed to allow for the creation of custom levels and assets that can be easily showcased and downloaded by community members. Epic's UDK makes it insanely easy for almost anyone to create additional content for IA! and we fully intend to support it (we grew up playing and making mods for games like Half-Life and Half-Life², so we're super excited to see what the community will come up with!).

Please keep in mind that the features described above are not set in stone and can likely change based on internal discussions, prototyping and community feedback.

[+] What are IA!'s planned theme and art style? UPDATED

Note that the following information is very raw; it's only meant to give you a small taste of what to expect. Over the coming weeks, we'll be describing each aspect in more detail with the help of a few renders and pieces of jaw-dropping concept art!

→ Theme

One of the key features we have planned for IA! is to offer tons of character personalization options for both the GP and OP sides, so when we set off to look for an appropriate theme, our primary goal was to find one that would allow for tons of different locations, environments, characters, weapons, gadgets, items (etc..), all within the same world.

And we did: a 60s Spy Film Parody (à la Austin Powers), with the GPs playing the good guys and the OPs playing the forces of evil. The possibilities for content are endless!

→ Art Style

Our search for the perfect art style was a bit simpler. We needed one that would fit the above theme while also allowing us to produce assets quickly (to offer a wide variety of content for players to choose from). We found that an illustrative/NPR style (similar to TF2 or BF Heroes) would be a great fit: nothing too realistic or too detailed, but still great-looking!

Take a look at IA!'s YouTube Channel and Gallery for videos, concepts and in-game screenshots showcasing the theme and art style.

[+] What is IA!'s development and release schedule?

Our development process for IA! is quite similar to Overwatch's (RERO): we implement features and build levels and assets in iterations, with each iteration consisting of a design, implementation, testing and feedback stage over a period of one to four weeks (ideally, most testing and feedback stages will involve the community).

What this all means is that you'll be playing the game as we build it and (hopefully) providing us with valuable feedback that we'll use when planning subsequent iterations. In short, our community will be able to contribute directly to the development and decision-making process of IA!, which in term will help us build the best game possible.

[+] When will I see some media, and when will I be able to play IA!?

You'll most likely be able to do both around the same time (i.e. as soon as we have something pretty to show, we'll likely let you see it in-game as well!). We don't have an exact date set, but what we can say is that the plan is to grant very early (read: pre-alpha) access a few short months from now. We're very anxious to get people playing, so we won't keep you from it any longer than we have to!

[+] What can I expect from IA!'s development team?

We're committed to building a kick-ass high-quality video game that you'll absolutely love, while keeping you intricately involved every step of the way. No matter the amount of effort and care we put into developing IA!, we believe that there is more to it than simply putting the pieces together. We will be releasing frequent updates, allowing you to enjoy the new features we'll be adding and giving you the opportunity to send us your feedback and suggestions, all while keeping you informed via news posts, blogs and even simple tweets (take a look at some of the ways we've kept the Overwatch community in the loop by visiting its forums and social networks).

We had a blast developing Overwatch with its community at our side and we're expecting to have even more fun with IA!'s! Be sure to register an account on our Community to get involved.

[+] What is the track record of IA!'s development team?

Our team (which we've lovingly called redMatter) has been home to highly talented indie developers with several years of experience working on some of the most popular mods including Sven Co-op, Dystopia, Decadence and many more. Then came Overwatch, a Source-based modification that we built from the ground up and released to the public only a year later, followed by several major updates. It was a complete success, having been downloaded over 90,000 times in the last year, given a rating of 9.3/10 by 250 members of its community and nominated to ModDB's Top 100 Mods of 2010 just six months after the initial announcement.

We're very confident in our abilities and are definitely committed to seeing this latest project through!

[+] Will I ever have to pay for IA!?

The short answer is yes but, as GabeN so aptly put it, not sucking is what we should be focusing on first, and we are!

In other words, our current priority is making sure that IA! is on its way to being awesome. However, as we're pouring our hearts and souls into this project and hope to be able to work on it full-time, pump out content faster and not starve in the process, we'll need to figure out some way to generate enough income to make that possible.

When the time comes, we'll be discussing a few monetization plans with our community and will hopefully find one that satisfies most people. In the meantime, if you're itching to support us, join our community, play the early builds (for free!) and send us as much feedback as you can.

Oh, and.. put some money aside. :)

[+] Where can I find more detailed information about IA!? UPDATED

We'll be trying our best to keep any important information we post synchronized across sites, but (in addition to this IndieDB profile) we strongly suggest that you keep an eye on the IA! Community, which is where we'll be posting developer blogs, progress reports and other bits of juicy info.

You can also join/follow/subscribe to/like us on one of the following social networks: Steam | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube

For specific inquiries, feel free to drop us a line through WebChat or at: info -AT- redmatter -DOT- ca

[+] What can I do to help or support the IA! development team?

There are actually many ways that you can help to ensure IA!'s success:

→ Join our Community

Joining and being an active member of the IA! Community is insanely valuable to us. Every comment and suggestion you post helps us make better decisions for IA!. Don't think, just join. It's free!

→ Tell your Friends

Invite them to join the IA! Community as well! You'll likely have more fun playing IA! if you're playing it with your buddies, so spread the word.

→ Play the Early Builds

As we've mentioned above, we'll be releasing pre-alpha builds to our community (for free!). The goal is to gather as much feedback as we can as early as possible to ensure that IA!'s development is on the right track.

→ Join the Team

If you're itching to work on a great project with an amazing team, you won't find a better place! We have a talented, experienced and insanely dedicated staff, a proven development process, custom tools and one heck of a project that's just a ton of fun to work on.

If you believe you have what it takes, be sure to send us your resume and/or a link to your online portfolio (with a few words explaining why you feel you'd make a good addition to our team) to: jobs -AT- redmatter -DOT- ca

Keep in mind that since we're indie and this is a commercial project, we have to be extra picky about who we bring onto the team. Priority goes to talented individuals with multidisciplinary skills.

[+] Will IA! be utterly awesome?


Still have questions? Contact us on our Community Forums or drop us a line through WebChat or by email at: info -AT- redmatter -DOT- ca