Shroud of the Avatar execs expand on Slayscape, a procedurally generated battle royale RPG


Last March we reported on the discovery of Pangaea, a development studio formed by existing execs of Shroud of the Avatar’s Catnip Games — specifically Chris Spears and Starr Long — and their first in-development title Project Rise, a session-based battle royale roguelike that procedurally generates maps and objectives in order to make each run feel unique.

Readers will recall that the shared development footage came from a 2023 conference event, but now we can offer up some more recent information, including a gameplay trailer from Spears as well as an official game name: Slayscape.

Slayscape seeks to blend battle royale gameplay, which is tied to being the first to escape a dungeon map; roguelike elements powered by the aforementioned procedural generation as well as cards players can find and play to modify the next dungeon; and “RPG flavor” that comes in the form of temporary traits, powers, and gear, while gold found in a run can be spent to unlock new character traits and classes. The game also aspires to release on PC, Linux, PS5, Xbox One (not X|S oddly), and tablets, though release timing isn’t tied down.

As for that video preview, Spears describes the footage as “early gameplay” while further touting Slayscape as “free to play, no pay to win, no grinding, and light RPG elements and customization.” That footage awaits just after the cut.

Longtime MOP readers will know that Shroud of the Avatar is a controversial game in the MMO space. Kickstarted in 2013, the project has been criticized for cutting promised features, crowdfunding excessively, delaying Kickstarter rewards, obfuscating its corporate leadership and office status, and neglecting SEC filings legally required by the game’s equity crowdfunding. In 2019, Richard Garriott company Portalarium sold SOTA to its lead dev and all but exited the game. Press inquires were met with stonewalling and insults, and equity crowdfund investors were abandoned without notice or any semblance of accountability; moreover, the execs began touting a (failed?) blockchain MMO and a battle royale. SOTA itself does still have a tiny playerbase and is technically still receiving minimal development.
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