Out now on Kickstarter – https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/bulkheadinteractive/battalion-1944-pc-xb1-ps4
About this project
Battalion 1944 recaptures the core of classic multiplayer shooters and propels WW2 into the next generation. Battalion 1944 utilizes the most advanced industry technology to create a visceral and heart-thumping multiplayer experience that has been crafted by the designers who have grown up playing Medal of Honor and Call of Duty 2.
Fight in real world locations such as the streets of Carentan, the forests of Bastogne and many more in our spiritual successor to the great multiplayer shooters of the past. Precise aim with your Kar98, covering fire with your M1 Garand and quick thinking with your Thompson are key to your success, all packaged into a competitive multiplayer environment. In short, Battalion 1944 is an infantry based first person shooter with an emphasis on raw skill. No grinding, no ‘exosuits’, just you and your skill as a player.
Join a Battalion and compete season to season with BattleRank, our global competition system. Contribute to your Battalion’s season objective to earn cosmetic rewards for your character, weapons and accessories within our realistic art style. Flaunt your success through your player profile to become a renowned player within the community. BattleRank’s highly tuned stat tracking system enables Battalion 1944 to go beyond the standard mould of shooters gone by and enables players to compete globally for rewards, glory and honour.
Fuelled by the power of Unreal Engine 4, Battalion 1944 resurges World War 2 back into the modern gaming spotlight in our spiritual successor to the great multiplayer shooters of the past such as Call of Duty 2 and Enemy Territory. On BattleRank, it’s down to skilled soldiers like you to fight for your battalion.
Raw skill based gameplay. We believe your skill should be determined by your play, not through unfair overpowered unlocks & abilities. Battalion learns from the skill based gameplay of classic competitive shooters and merges it with the stunning visuals that our team can produce, utilizing next-gen techniques such as motion capture, physically based rendering and photogrammetry to make Battalion a truely next gen competitive shooter.
Intense & balanced infantry combat. Our designers have scoured hundreds of multiplayer shooters to design the best fitting formula for a well balanced WW2 first person shooter. The excitement in Battalion lies in the down the barrel experience.
BattleRank competitions. Go lone wolf or team up alongside friends. Contribute to your Battalion’s season objective, receiving rewards for team and individual efforts. Compete in regular challenges ranging from seasonal to quick fire hourly objectives to earn rewards and extra XP. Challenges are broadcast via the main menu’s challenge alert panel as well as through our social media outlets.
Beautiful & realistic environments. Our incredibly talented art team are designing a visually stunning recreation of World War 2 and have even travelled to Normandy for reference and research to make the maps as authentic as possible. The world needs to look as real as we can push it. It’s important to us for Battalion to have longevity, to do this everything in Battalion will be designed and rendered using the latest advances in industry technology. Battalion will be on the forefront of video game graphics.
Game mode variety. Battalion emphasizes balance in classic game modes such as Capture the Flag, deathmatch, and domination. We’ll also be bringing new game modes that we’re in the process of testing. We will also be turning to the community for any requests, suggestions or ideas for game modes.
Tight, focused, competitive maps. Battalion’s maps will be designed around our team based infantry combat. The map locations are inspired by real world battlegrounds of the allied campaign and blended with competitive layouts of classic shooters that focus on balance and competition.
Cosmetic Progression System. Our progression system will not under any circumstances offer game breaking advantages to players of higher rank but instead will offer a purely cosmetic based unlock system. When you gain XP you will be rewarded with visual upgrades for your character, accessories and weapons within our realistic art style guidelines. This way players can shape their own identity and become a renowned and recognisable player within the community whilst still retaining an authentic World War 2 experience.
Define your soldier’s identity. Your character is unique to you. Change how other players see you and become recognizable within the Battalion community. Use cosmetic unlocks rewarded to you for your skill to define your characters identity.
Build your own unique arsenal of weaponry. During our research trip to Normandy, we noticed that most soldiers had actually engraved names into their rifles. Players will be able to customise their weapons and their own player character with that same level of individuality and really feel a connection to their personalised arsenal.
Fight together as a Platoon. Team up with friends and create a platoon within your chosen Battalion. Become a recognized platoon within your Battalion. Make your platoon known for being the deadliest, most effective, or the most active platoon, receiving unique rewards and raising the bar of competition.
Movie Quality Animation. Most developers don’t have access to a motion capture studio. By animating your character using motion capture, our animations are as real as possible. Motion capture gives Battalion a more authentic and immersive game experience
LAN support. Too many modern games leave out simple LAN support. Battalion is designed to be a great LAN game to compete with or against friends locally with our classic and easy to use server browser.
Reliable Server Hosting with Multiplay. Battalion is teaming up with Multiplay to bring players the most reliable and highest quality in game servers. Alongside our official servers, players will have the ability to host and change server rule sets to suit their own gaming needs. Server admins will be able to choose to have BattleRanked, unranked, or private game servers.
Persistent Anti-cheat System. We want you to have the confidence that you’re playing in a cheat free environment, which is why we travelled to Games Connection in Paris to meet with top anti cheat developers. We’re currently in talks with ‘Game Blocks’ the cheat system behind Battlefront and we are also considering using Easy Anti Cheat who provide cheat protection for Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Squad. We’re dedicating time and resources to find the best anti-cheat provider to fit Battalion 1944.
Community Driven Development. Battalion is a game by the players for the players. Most of you reading this page have grown up and are still playing shooters to this day, so in a way we all own this genre. The community will be be a huge part of the key design decisions in Battalion. To keep the community involved in development, we will stream design meetings from our studio where players can actively participate meetings. Public play tests will regularly take place as well as other community aimed events focused on player feedback and player design participation. We’ve set up brand new forums for the community to stay actively involved with the development team.
At its core, Battalion 1944 is a classic multiplayer first person shooter. Set in the battle locations of World War 2 with an emphasis on skill and rewards. Currently Battalion fields strong classic game modes such as Capture the Flag, Domination and Team Deathmatch. Alongside the classics we are experimenting with new game modes, we’ll be calling on Founder & Partner backers in the coming months to help us test and balance these new game modes. Battalion is an infantry based game, using weapons from the WW2 era, meaning precise aim with your Kar98, covering fire with your M1 Garand and quick thinking with your Thompson are key to success.
Competition is at the heart of Battalion, maps are designed with different game modes and server sizes in mind. Whether you like to run and gun in a Deathmatch arena with 16 players, or rifle it out in a robust competitive layout with smaller and more focused team sizes, all playstyles can and will be catered for. We’ll even enable players to admin their own servers and play with their own rule sets, allowing you to add all the mayhem or restrictions that you want.
BattleRank is our global competition system.
Whilst the groundwork is currently being done to make a secure and ergonomic system, the graphical interface will be one of the last parts of BattleRank to be finished. Below is an explanation of how BattleRank works and how it’s unique to Battalion, encouraging competitiveness and teamwork. When you first launch the game, you will be asked to join a Battalion for the current season, for instance “Wolf Battalion” for the Spring 2017 season. The Battalion with the highest combined score for that season will win rewards for everyone within the Battalion.
What is a Battalion? A Battalion is a large group of individual players, with the player limit expanding dynamically depending on the size of the active Battalion player base. In your Battalion, you can choose to play as a lone-wolf or create a Platoon (clan) with friends and other players.
Competition and Scores. When you play the game, your score goes towards your Battalion. Your Battalion is constantly competing against every other Battalion in the game. Your Battalion’s overall score is measured in many ways, from daily challenges such as; ‘Most knife kills in 24hrs’ to the overarching Battalion Season goal, for example ‘Most flag caps this season’.
Joining a Platoon. A Platoon is simply a clan, except your clan can have its own profile page with medals, awards, and stats. Platoon scores go towards their overall Battalion score in the season championships*. Whilst all the Platoons in one Battalion are part of the same team, they are also competing within that Battalion for Platoon specific rewards and titles such as “deadliest’, ‘most effective’ and ‘most dedicated’ Platoon in their Battalion. Platoons will also be given specific daily, weekly and monthly challenges such as most flag caps and least deaths.
*Note that players are never forced to join a platoon, it’s an extra option for players that wish to compete together as a team against other teams. If you want to play on your own, you can! You’ll receive the same rewards and benefits as every other Battalion player.
Medals and Rewards. At the end of a season, players and platoons will be able to collect their rewards and display their medals on their in game profiles. Players will be rewarded with cosmetic unlocks for weapons and character customisation, some of which are extremely rare and valuable within the community and some that are only available to win during specific seasons. Active players in the highest scoring Battalion at the end of a season will receive the rarest rewards.
What happens at the end of a season? After each season the Battalions are reset. Players and Platoons will be able to join new Battalions to avoid a situation where there is one dominant Battalion.
Bulkhead Interactive is formed of two companies “Deco Digital” and “Bevel Studios”, who have worked together in the same office for the past 2 years. Previously the team released “Pneuma: Breath of Life” across major platforms. We were the first team to release an Unreal Engine 4 game on a next gen platform, we’re currently one of the most experienced UE4 development teams. Our team was nominated for a Develop Industry Excellence Award in July 2015. We have a top calibre team formed of hard working and creative developers who have released titles on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Steam. Operating out of our Derby studio in the heart of the United Kingdom, we have a solid plan and a proven track record of getting games out to players.
Kickstarter is just the first step of our plan. We are fully committed to making Battalion 1944 the game that shooter fans deserve. We need the initial support to know if this is the game that players, like you reading this Kickstarter, want to play. If the initial funding goal is met, we’ll be investing our own £100,000. Meaning the minimum budget of the game will be £200,000, double what we’re asking for. We hope this gives confidence to backers that we’re here to work together with you to make the game we all want to play.
Having already invested funds in the initial kickstarter pre alpha, Bulkhead Interactive are prepared to double our initial funding goal to create a WW2 game with the balancing and focus that shooter fans like ourselves and you have been missing out on for the past decade.
Our goals are designed to reflect actual development goals and how much it will realistically cost us to reach these objectives. We are under no illusions and estimate it will cost in the region of £200,000 ($300k) to fully fund the initial vision of the project, which is why we’re investing £100,000 of our own funds once our initial funding goal is reached to ensure Battalion 1944’s successful release and post game support.
We have broken down the combination of our initial funding goal and £100,000 of our own funds into this simple to understand pie chart.The majority of the funds are allocated to development, keeping the focus on designing and developing the best title possible. We’re determined to make Battalion 1944 a great experience across both PC and Console. With high fidelity graphics created using the latest tech for modelling, texturing and animation, it’s important we have a large portion of our funds dedicated to ensure this level of quality is consistent across the entire game. The costs of maintaining a strong community presence are also included in the chart, albeit a modest amount, it’s important that the community is managed appropriately.
– Reliable Servers & Anti-Cheat System
We’ve also allocated a dedicated amount of the funds towards hosting solid servers and anti-cheat systems to help make Battalion a reliable and fair experience. We’ll also be dedicating large portion of the funds to quality assurance and balance testing, to ensure the community only ever plays Battalion in the most stable and reliable state possible at that time.
– Authentic Sound Effects & Bespoke Soundtrack
Battalion’s audio presence is very important. We’re working with some amazingly talented sound designers to produce a unique and original soundtrack for Battalion which emulates the iconic sounds of the ‘Band of Brothers’ and ‘The Pacific’ soundtracks. As well as producing an original score for the game, we’re looking into recording authentic weapon sounds to make Battalion’s moment to moment experience even more heart pounding & visceral.
– Taxes & Fees
And finally we have also put aside a portion for taxes and kickstarter fees as well as the exclusive rewards that we have on offer for your support!
– Timeline & Planning
Release dates for every stage of development will be announced when they are ready for public play. Our public release schedule is aimed to be as follows:
– Internal Pre-Alpha
The game is currently in it’s internal pre-alpha state. The prototype is networked and fully functioning but is not yet ready for public consumption. We want to make sure the Battalion experience is fluid, optimized and fully developed for players before any public release. Backers can gain access to our first closed alpha test by pledging at the Sergeant Founder level or above!
– Steam Early Access
The early access program for Battalion 1944 will be available for PC players who want to help us test and develop the game before full release. Creating a solid & balanced gameplay experience for players will be our highest priority. Through your feedback during early access via live streamed twitch meetings and forum activity we’ll be able to create a highly polished final version of Battalion as a community.
– Have your opinion heard during the Closed Alpha
Sergeant Founder backer tiers and above will have their opinions voiced during the closed alpha sessions intended for gameplay, map and balance testing. We’ll also be running closed beta sessions exclusive to our backers as well as selected journalists.
– Final PC & Console release
Once we’re happy with the state of the game we’ll be able to launch on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Steam.This can only happen if we reach our initial funding goal, Battalion will NOT be made if we do not reach our initial funding goal, there are no other options. Please help us fund, design, and test Battalion, become a founding member of what could be one of the best shooters of the decade. Important: Battalion will be released on all platforms, we have the equipment, time and if the funding goal is met, money to have Battalion available to everyone. However, the order of release, dates, and times may vary subject to discussions with the platform holders themselves. This is with Battalion’s best interests in mind for players on all platforms.
– Tax Benefits
We are also proud to be a UK based studio, benefiting from UK Games Tax Relief supported by organisations such as UKIE, BFI & TIGA, which benefits not only the development of Battalion 1944 but also the economy as a whole.
If you have an idea or proposal that goes above and beyond these tiers please let us know and we will seriously consider it. We may even reveal some higher level tiers if demand is there. Feel free to post suggestions in our comments section or forums.
Unreal Engine 4 is a powerful game engine developed by Epic Games. Bulkhead Interactive have an excellent relationship with Epic and have been using UE4 even before it was publicly available. Unreal Engine allows us to take advantage of technology like physically-based rendering allowing us to create mind blowing, stunning environments in what will be the most visually impressive recreation of World War 2 to date. This level of graphical capability has not yet been attempted in a WW2 first person shooter.
For more information on ‘Battalion 1944’ please like and follow our accounts on social media or get involved in the discussion on our newly launched Battalion community forums. We’ve also provided links to our press kit for anyone who wants to cover the game on news sites and social media. We’ll make sure players and gaming press who get involved with sharing the word on Battalion 1944 will be the first to receive the latest updates on Battalion’s development.
Risks and challenges
Game development often provides unexpected challenges that can ultimately lead to changes and delays. Fortunately, our Bulkhead team members have a track record of producing high quality content across multiple platforms and working to deadlines. We’re made up of members who put the first Unreal Engine 4 game on Xbox One & fresh industry talent. We understand the videogames industry and with your support, we have the drive, the technology and the resources to make this game.
Time is most certainly of the essence, but we have an experienced development team to get the job done to the highest standard. We have built a team with only one goal in mind: making the best multiplayer World War 2 shooter of this generation. If you want to join us in this journey, feel free to pledge your support to Battalion 1944.