Left 4 Dead and Evolve developer Turtle Rock Studios reveals that it is working on a new game, which will have co-op FPS gameplay and ‘plenty of baddies to shoot.’

Just a few months ago, Turtle Rock Studios, best known for its work on Left 4 Dead, announced that it would be ending support for its asymmetrical multiplayer game, Evolve. The developer hasn’t just been sat on its hands since, though, as Turtle Rock Studios has now confirmed several details about its next project.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, Turtle Rock Studios co-founder Phil Robb revealed that the company has teamed up with Star Trek Online distributor Perfect World Entertainment for its next game. The upcoming title, which does not yet have a name, is set in an “all new universe” and offers the style of gameplay that the community “loves and expects” from the developer. Turtle Rock Studios president and general manager Steve Goldstein described the game as having a “dark fantasy element” to it, and that the game will have a “huge focus” on co-operative and first-person shooting gameplay.

Moreover, Goldstein says that the game will offer “plenty of baddies to shoot,” although it’s not a spiritual successor to Left 4 Dead, lacking both zombies and a post-apocalyptic setting. With Left 4 Dead being one of the best ever zombie video games, many will be disappointed, but as Goldstein thinks that calling the new game a spiritual successor “sets an expectation that we’re making something sequel-like that does not deviate too far from the original formula,” it’s probably for the best.

Goldstein also says that the studio is currently “staffing up on positions for this new project.” Following a hiring spree earlier this year, the developer is now at around 70 employees but the Turtle Rock exec expects that the studio will likely “top out” at around 100 people.

Evolve hunters

While the game does sound interesting – even with these scant details – and while the need to hire so many also speaks of the game’s ambitions, there are still plenty of questions that need to be asked between now and the game’s prospective 2018 release date. Not only are the primary details of the project still yet to be unveiled, but there are also questions about the title’s business model. Namely, will the game be free to play, like Evolve: Stage 2?

In the GI.biz interview, Goldstein speaks incredibly positively about free to play business models, including saying that “service-oriented games are providing more value to players and earning more player time” and that publisher Perfect World, a company which is known for free to play titles, is “all about the service and consistently and frequently expanding the scope of its games over several years.” Goldstein even says that he “can’t overstate how helpful [the free to play business model] is to us as developers” which certainly suggests that Turtle Rock’s new project will be F2P as well.

Free to play business models can be divisive and controversial, especially when gamers feel that a developer has made its game pay-to-win, but it could make good business sense for Turtle Rock to continue to monetize in this way. After all, Evolve‘s playerbase saw a massive boost after going free to play, solving concerns many had that Evolve‘s playerbase was dropping. Turtle Rock has plenty of time to decide what it’s plans are for its new game, though, and the company will detail its plans in good time.

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