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Why RAGE Has No Deathmatch

This interview on Shacknews.com talks with Jason Kim, producer of RAGE, id's upcoming first-person shooter (which may well make this the first game from id Software that actually has someone with that title attached to the project). A topic that gets a lot of discussion is the decision that the game will have a cooperative multiplayer mode, but no competitive mode, which is a twist for the company that coined the term "deathmatch." Here's part of Jason's explanation:

So when we were pushing on the story, we thought, "People really love co-op; we love co-op." We don't want them to play the entire campaign with a buddy because you're just playing the same thing again with just another guy. And some people like that; some people are going to ask for that, and when this comes out they're going to say why didn't you make campaign mode completely playable with a co-op buddy? The reason why we did that is because there are nice story pockets for the co-op online experience; we call it Legends of the Wasteland.

This almost came about opportunistically because we knew we wanted to do co-op. So while we're putting this thing together and iterating through it we thought, "We should use these story elements because it's really interesting. It's a tall tale." You're being thrust into this little nugget of the story, and there are set parameters. We know what they did, but it was a legend. So now you're playing that role. You're not playing the story of the single-player campaign but it's something that complimented your success through the single-player campaign. So you're seeing what the other side was like. It's almost like when Valve came out with Blue Shift and you were able to play the police force.

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50. Re: Why RAGE Has No Deathmatch May 2, 2011, 00:02 LanikTnt
 
I think this says more about Id's confidence producing a good mulitplayer experience than it does the viability of it. While I agree old-school deathmatch is not popular anymore, all you have to do is look at the success of Call of Duty, CounterStrike, Battlefield, etc. to see that there is a huge demand for multiplayer shooters.

When's the last time I cared about an Id multiplayer shooter? Would have to have been Q2 and that was only because there were so many good multiplayer mods. Their mindset has been to create good engines and let players figure out how to make it fun and that just doesn't cut it anymore.
 
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