Chemical Head Studios announced that their sandbox, open-world, crime-themed MMO called Badlads will enter into Early Access on Steam starting April 17th.
The game is a little bit like an open-world, real-time version of Omerta: City of Gangsters, only the opposition is being played by other people.
The objective is to start off as a citizen, choose to become one of three factions (e.g., Neutral, Government or Crime) and then attempt to make some dosh, buy up as much property as possible, and either become the President or own all the territory in Vegas.
Chemical Head Studios wants to build a new role-playing MMO experience where you’re building out your own corner of the world but also interacting with other players to take control of the virtual universe. Mark J. Grikis explained in the press release…
“Let’s say the President bans all Gangsters from the city, forces the Police to do his bidding or face his wrath. Gangs can choose to team up to assassinate the President, once you eliminate him, he loses his Job and his power. That’s the heartbeat of Gangs vs Government. The President does his best to run the city and not upset the wrong people.”
Badlads is presented in a low-poly, cel-shaded fashion, focusing more on the features and mechanics than the graphics. You can give it a look-see with the trailer below.
While the visuals are nothing to write home about, I do wonder how much of the game will play out in a reasonable fashion and how much of it will play out like GTA V‘s online mode where there’s just chaos everywhere?
There is a slice-of-life element to the neutral path, where they explain that you can just nab a job as a construction worker, or as a salesman, or you can become a robber and indulge in a life of crime.
If there’s more incentive to play it by the book than to be a dicktastic, rampaging psychopath, then I could see the game becoming popular for having that ebb and flow between trying to play by the rules and trying to get ahead by skirting around the lines of the law.
Depending on how this one develops will depend on whether or not it’s worth any sort of significant time investments. You can keep an eye on Badlads by visiting the Steam store page, or following the game ahead of its April 17th Early Access release.