‘Just Cause’ studio announces cooperative ’80s shooter ‘Generation Zero’

Swedish developer Avalanche Studios is no stranger to the apocalypse, having developed the Mad Max game and now Rage 2, but the studio’s next project will hit a little closer to home — because it’s in its home. Generation Zero is a cooperative shooter set in 1980s Sweden, and it’s up to you to take back the country from hostile machines.

Generation Zero‘s malicious robots look slightly similar to the ones in Horizon Zero Dawn at first glance, walking on four limbs and jumping through the air as they approach a group of survivors. The humans have gear that appears to be cobbled together from museums, as they’re using old-fashioned rifles and what appear to be World War I-era German army helmets. Nevertheless, the guns seem to work, as they cause the machines to explode into a mess of fire and scrap.

“By using battle-tested guerilla tactics, you’ll be able to lure, cripple, or destroy enemies in intense, creative sandbox skirmishes,” Avalanche Studios said on the game’s website.

Generation Zero will be playable solo or with up to three friends in what Avalanche called “seamless co-op multiplayer,” and as the enemies are “persistently simulated” in the game world, you’ll never know when the next threat might be near. The game also appears to be taking a page from the recent Middle-earth games, as any damage you do to an enemy will be permanent, even if you don’t fight them again for several weeks. This sense of player-led gameplay is at the heart of Generation Zero, and Avalanche intends for no two encounters to ever be the same.

Avalanche Studios, which was just purchased by Nordisk Film for roughtly $105 million, will be self-publishing Generation Zero, which allows the company to take more risks than it could have if it sought out a separate partner.

“The creative freedom has allowed our small but brilliant team to double down on passion and develop an experience that we feel brings something unique to the table,” said game director Emil Kraftling in a letter to players.

Generation Zero brings its bizarre marriage of ’80s Sweden and the near-annihilation of humanity to Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC in 2019.

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