Startup studio, Pocket Sized Hands, have started work on their first VR title, called Honeypot Espionage. This online multiplayer is set for a Q4 2017 launch on the HTC Vive.
In Honeypot Espionage you’re a spy fighting against other spies in a combat arena. The gameplay and aesthetics are somewhat reminiscent of Superhot, but with a twist. In fact, the studio itself describes the game as a mix between Superhot and Predator. Instead of this being your typical run around like crazy and shoot type FPS, Honeypot Espionage actually encourages you to be as still and silent as possible. Because in this game, it’s all about stealth and strategy.
By standing completely still in the game, you become invisible – only to start materializing again when you move, fire a weapon or set a trap. And traps are another way you can become visible again as well – if you get caught in them. Some of the game mechanics in Honeypot Espionage remind me of the Spy vs. Spy game. Now, if you ever enjoyed Spy vs. Spy as much as I did, then the potential of being a spy in VR thrills you just as much.
The game is still in pre-alpha mode, so the developers are still working everything out. But we do know that there are going to be a couple of game modes, including last man standing and deathmatch. We also know that there are game modes where you will be able to team up with others to complete objectives. These objectives can include having to break into high-security government buildings to steal classified documents or for you to guard a VIP and keep them hidden from potential assassins. Here are some more of the game features that the studio has revealed thus far:
- Multiple Game modes, like;
- Secure locations and hold down against attacks in the king of the hill variant.
- Hide as the VIP and outsmart your opponents by staying concealed and setting up traps.
- Break in and steal sensitive documents while Guards (Other players) patrol the building.
- Stay hidden and pounce at the right time to kill in a strategic version of Classic Death Match.
- Use objects in the environment to help you hide or time that perfect attack.
- You can duck behind objects, lean out behind walls and possibly lie down on the floor
- Use items to create distractions and get attention away from you.
- Pick up whatever you see and put it to good use.
Pocket Sized Hands have recently released their first pre-alpha trailer of the game and the video has received a warm response on Youtube and Reddit already:
Q&A with Alan Yeats, Founder of Pocket Sized Hands
I see your game is set to launch on the HTC Vive. Are you planning on adding support for any other headsets later on?
We are building the game in the Vive, currently, but we will have an oculus version on release. We also have access to a PSVR devkit and if things go well we could aim for a release on it as well.
You state that there will be multiple game modes. Could you elaborate on some of the modes you are planning to include?
Currently, we are working on game modes that make players move. Think like king of the hill, or oddball from Halo. We plan to try out ideas where 4 invisible players are up against 4 visible guards. The spies break in and have to steal documents, which the guards are keeping safe.
Right now we are just seeing what is fun within the game, what works and what works well. We keep getting new ideas for things we like to try. One Redditor had a great idea about sneaking into the other team’s base and breaking everything in their china cabinet which sounds like something we have to try out.
Follow up to question 2: Will this be a multiplayer title exclusively, or are you planning a single player/campaign mode? If so, are you including a storyline?
We want to focus on multiplayer at the moment. We may build some small single player levels to show off mechanics as tutorials but I don’t think it will go further than that.
Which locomotion mechanic are you using in Honeypot Espionage?
Currently, we are using Teleportation. When you teleport you leave a visible trail (like a shimmer) behind. It gives a rough location of where you have teleported to. Other players can see this. You also have a teleport decoy. When you fire this it leaves the same teleport trail but you stay in the same place, giving others the illusion that you have moved when you actually haven’t. (Hope that makes sense) . We love Climbey (the VR climbing game). Its movement mechanic may work well in some of our levels, so we might try that at some stage for fun, but teleportation is the main mode at the moment.
How many players will there be in a team?
Up to 8 players altogether. 4v4 when it comes to teams.
How will you tackle the issue of campers? Will there be ways to get players to move or to detect other players who are simply staying in one place for an extended period of time?
A lot of the level mechanics are built around movement. Such as the game modes I mentioned earlier. So staying still in these modes isn’t a great advantage. They force you to move to win. We are playing around with the idea of using sound to reveal players who stay in the same place all the time. So if someone hides in a corner for ages you could start to hear breathing from them. It’s a work in progress.
Another idea we’ve had is to use a mini-map on your arm which pings rough locations of people who stay static for a while
Where did your inspiration for the game’s name come from?
A little bit from the seduction methods of spies to getting people to reveal their info, but more from the computing side of things.
There’s no news on a price range yet, but we’ll give you more updates on Honeypot Espionage closer to launch.