Did you enjoy Medal of Honour and Call of Duty, before it turned into a nightmare version of the Jetsons? Then you’ll probably like Battalion 1944.
The Square Enix Collective is an interesting thing. There are probably a few folks out there viewing the move with cynicism – why would an enormo-publisher be so interested in helping little indies? – but it’s got to be a good thing for the industry.
In short the Square Enix Collective is offering publishing deals (on the back of a Greenlight-like community voting system) but perhaps more importantly, industry advice and mentoring, to a wide range of indie developers. We’ve seen everything from a Portal-esque puzzle game (The Turing Test, the previous release from Bulkhead Interactive) to a Japanese-style tactical RPG (Children of Zodiarcs) and all sorts of weird and wonderful things in between. Today, Battalion 1944 – a hardcore, World War 2 shooter – is the latest game to join the Collective.
Battalion 1944 – not to be confused with Battlefield 1, the similar-sounding First World War epic and one of the best games of 2016 – is actually quite similar to DICE’s reboot of their premier first-person shooter. It’s a gritty, realistic, multiplayer-focused title, that channels the style and feel of the original Medal of Honour (from way back in 1999).
“We received some strong offers from other very big publishers on Battalion 1944. But ultimately, the one team that really stood out for us was Square Enix Collective. Why? Because they published our previous game, The Turing Test on PC, so we’ve gotten to know them well and that means we know how they work. Crucially, we know that the relationship will be based on trust; and that’s something which works both ways” – Joe Brammer, senior game producer, Bulkhead Interactive
The publishing deal between Bulkhead and the Square Enix Collective will see Battalion 1944 brought to PC, PS4 and Xbox One. There’s no details on a release date yet, but for those who backed the game’s original Kickstarter campaign – or pre-order the game via their website – will get access to a closed alpha test in May 2017.