Amazon's in-house developers are about to launch their first blockbuster game. It's not the MMO you're probably thinking of, but a free-to-play shooter called Crucible, a game that looks awfully inspired by every popular multiplayer game from the last few years.
Launching through Steam on May 21 for Australians, the game pitches itself as a "team-based action shooter" where you battle other Essence Hunters as well as various monsters.
There will be three game modes at launch. The first is a 4v4 game mode called Heart of the Hives, where teams capture "hearts" left behind by massive monsters on the map. The second is a fairly standard battle royale, last player standing, type affair. The third is Harvester Command, a 8v8 game that's effectively Crucible's equivalent of a Domination mode.
The most intriguing element here isn't mentioned on the Steam page or the official trailer. Being made by Amazon, it's likely that Crucible has some particular integrations planned with Twitch, the livestreaming platform which Amazon outbid Google for back in 2014.
Back in 2016, Amazon announced some interesting integrations with Crucible, where one player could act as a type of game master overseeing other Crucible players. None of that functionality was referenced in the release or trailer, however. Crucible has been "redesigned many times" over the last few years, according to the head of Crucible's development studio, Louis Castle, in a New York Times piece.
"Thankfully, we’re with a company that has the resources to let this new team fully gel and get a great expression out there," Castle told NYT. The game was originally set to ship at the end of March, but was postponed due to complications around transitioning amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
It'll be interesting to see Amazon's post-launch commitment to Crucible, and what more gets announced over the next few weeks. It's also worth keeping an eye on the other projects going on: New World, the MMO being developed by Amazon's development house in Irvine, California, and a second MMO supposedly built on the Lord of the Rings franchise that's also being developed by the New World team.