CCP Games, the Icelandic developer of the open world game Eve Online, has announced Project Legion. a first-person shooter (FPS) for the PC which will inhabit the Eve universe.
The new title was announced, along with a live demo of an early version of the game at FanFest 2014, the company's annual celebration of the Eve universe.
The new massively multiplayer online (MMO) game will be free-to-play and will give players a new way into the Eve universe. It is part of a multilayered strategy by CCP Games to leverage the hugely complex world created by the Eve Online players.
Along with the original Eve Online game, the company has developed the PlayStation 3 game called Dust 514 as well as the company's virtual reality dogfighter Eve: Valkyrie which is being developed for the Oculus Rift and Sony's Project Morpheus - all of which are based in the same universe.
The vision for Project Legion is on a much grander scale than Dust 514, though the company will be using the visuals developed for the console shooter.
The free-to-play game will use the same sandbox model used for Eve Online, meaning the world will be character driven, allowing players to capture districts or even whole worlds.
Julien Dulioust, producer and monetisation director on Project Legion, says that the company had asked itself: "How can we take the Eve Online experience and adapt it to the FPS genre? It is what Dust 514 should have been."
Dust 514 is a typical first-person shooter which follows a linear narrative, unlike the open world, sandbox universe of Eve Online which sees the narrative driven by the players.
Back to our roots
And it is this world which Project Legion wants to inhabit.
"We wanted to go back to CCP roots. MMO, sandbox, FPS. How can we build the tools, and give the community these tools to make their own meta game?"
The company will use the knowledge it has built up over a decade of developing Eve Online and apply it to an FPS model.
The game has been in development in CCP's Shanghai office for just a few months and the company is not revealing when they expect to launch the game.
It is called Project Legion at the moment but this is just a placeholder title, though Dulioust says the company hasn't even begun talking about what the game will be called, though it's likely to contain the 'Eve' moniker.
Eve Online is an unashamedly difficult game which is complex and time-consuming. This puts a lot of potential players off but CCP is hoping that Project Legion will appeal to a bigger audience:
"This will be much more accessible. First of all it will be a free-to-play game, there will be no barrier to entry. And it is a brand new experience, it is something that people never experienced before. We want to give something different for the users."
Dulioust says that unlike most first-person shooters, Project Legion won't be all about shooting each other in the face.
"It should be a social experience, I go there with my friends, form a squad. I develop tactics to avoid drones and get the best loot ever."
Unlike Eve Online which requires players to pay a subscription fee, Project Loon will use the free-to-play monetisation model.
Not a money grab
Dulioust says that the monetisation models the company is working on for Project Legion will be completely different to those employed on Dust 514.
While he couldn't speak about specifics he did say the company is working on some "innovative concepts" which are designed to reap rewards over a longer period of time.
"We want players to be willing to spend money. We don't want people to feel they have to spend money to get a better experience or to advance. We want to build something fair for all the players."
Dulioust added: "We cannot afford to be a money grab, we cannot afford to be a pay-to-win game, because people would leave instantly."
The company said Dust 514 will continue to be updated though CCP wouldn't comment on a potential PlayStation 4 version or how many players were actively playing it.