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'Zero Hour' the first Bangladeshi-made online tactical FPS released globally

  • Published at 01:57 pm August 9th, 2020
D2_August 8, 2020_Zero Hour

Bangladeshi Game Developers have plunged into the global video game industry by producing a compelling tactical multiplayer shooter that is now taking massive hits right after its official gameplay reveal on July 12, 2020

Zero Hour attempts to be a realistic slow-pace tactical 5v5 shooter. A tactical shooter is a subgenre of shooter games that encompasses both first-person and third-person shooting experiences. This is truly an addictive and appealing genre to a certain extent that it entirely promotes the idea of any real-life close quarter combat (CQC) or SOCOM series. 

Zero Hour evolves with the realistic tactic execution and timing of actions performed by the entire team. You will get to choose between MS Unit-9 and the terrorists. The attackers will be geared up with shields, various lethal weapons and a 3D planning table. Whilst, the opposing team as terrorists will be doing traps and deploying gadgets to fortify the area. 

In this game, making decisive pushes, quick response to any contact, low tolerance on damage, effective callouts, artful retaliation, pre-game planning, stress management, and other factors are very crucial if your team has a winning mindset. Thus, it holds the knack of grabbing the attention of gamers until the very end. What exactly makes Zero Hour the “not-so-boring” online tactical FPS? Nayem Bin Hasan (Partner Architect & Creative Director, Attrito) and Meheraj Maruf (Managing Director & Game Developer, M7 Productions) share their experience and insights about the upcoming video game.

Zero Hour - the tactical FPS is produced and developed as a joint venture of Attrito and M7 Productions. Attrito is a creative studio comprising some professional architects located at Lalmatia, Dhaka. They work on 3D modelling, architectural projects, visual graphics, environment design for game development, and other work of that category. M7 Productions is more like a software company with a few bright young minds. Their work includes video game designing, post-processing in video games, VFX, cinematography, and so on. 

Both M7 and Attrito had previously revealed the trailer of an open-world storytelling mission-based gameplay known as 'Agontuk' back in late 2019. From code to art, map, user interface and character design, a total number of 33 developers are working persistently on Zero Hour.

Why did you consider a career in video game development?

Nayeem: Well, to be frank, before hopping into the architectural firm, I had always had an irresistible passion for visualization since I was a young student. I used to play GTA when I was only a teenager. From that moment, I harboured a deep feeling that one day I will get to drive vehicles on the streets of Dhaka in any video game. After taking architecture as a major, I was quite sure to pursue my dream. Then, there comes a moment in my life when I met Meheraj and we got to know each other. I shared my idea with him. He accepted my offer right away and now we're working as a team.

Meheraj: I have been working on system development and game assets for a long time. The main reason we took the risk of starting a venture of developing video games is that we make a good team with Attrito. For that reason, we introduced both Agontuk and Zero Hour as we found that we are capable of doing it.

Is Zero Hour based on a contemporary story?

Nayeem: We have tried to portray the fictional representation of Dhacca (Dhaka) City in Zero Hour. We're not disclosing any specific location until it is officially unravelled.

Meheraj: This game takes place in today's time. It has no actual single-player story mode. But it does have to offer more. The game starts with a short cinematic trailer. In this game, the attackers will be represented as a typical Bangladeshi SWAT task force known as MS-Unit 9. This special unit is highly trained to deploy against any threats of terrorism, hostage situations, and to carry out any secret mission which is beyond the capabilities of ordinary law enforcement agency.

What are the things Zero Hour is doing better than other multiplayer shooters?

Meheraj: Right now there are several tactical FPS which are dominating the online game industry such as Six Siege and CS:GO. But to be honest, they are solely focused on competitive gaming instead of being realistic. As they are focusing on a global audience, realism is less prioritized over fictional characters. But this is where Zero Hour steps in. We can assure you that gamers will enjoy our tactical FPS realism. We have some key features. For instance: 

• Revamped Map: Most of our maps are designed to provide the gamer with a night-time enthralling experience.

• Planning Table: Prior to each game, the attackers can use a 3D blueprint of the area to sketch out their in-game strategy by using three different pointers. Which you won't find in Six Siege or CS:GO.

• Resource Management: Both attackers and terrorists can loot their weapons.

• Hostage: The hostage can run to and fro. That means it's not as easy as it seems to get hold of the hostage from the defenders.

• Doors: You can peek before entering into any door, representing real-life situations in SWAT missions.

• Breaker Switch: This is one of the most eye-catching features in our game. You can decide to turn off the main power of the building which will cause a complete blackout. It won't make winning more challenging, rather the player can still use a military flashlight and wreak havoc.

• Esports Mode: We can use this feature if we want to set up any regional or global competition.

Do you believe Zero Hour has the potential to grow?

Nayeem: People often judge games based on their graphics. Still, to achieve a 'AAA' title (supposedly a generic indicator of production value quality), there are several benchmarks that the developers need to think about before the official release. For instance, customer response, a proper budget, service quality dimensions, in-game features and so on. We are doing our level best to represent Bangladesh on a global platform. As we are still growing, we would hope that the government and other private firms will come forward and support us. Today, I feel so proud to share that every member of our team is very sincere and promising. As of yet, we do not consider ourselves a successful team but the amount of responses we're getting is quite encouraging. We believe that we will be getting more responses not only from within Bangladesh but on a larger scale as we're targeting the international market.

Do you have any suggestions for youths who can take inspiration from you?

Nayeem: We do not think that it's the right time to inspire young people as we have got so much more to give to this country. But, what I would say is youths should think out of the box. There is a common stereotype among Bengali parents that if my child plays video games, he or she will turn out to be a spoiled one. But I can assure you that no one can get spoiled by playing video games. Rather, it's scientifically proven that video games elevate one's analytical intelligence and problem-solving skill.

Meheraj: I started game development as a hobby when I was 11. I had sheer support from my family. I would suggest youths putting more emphasis on discovering their potentials. It's not that easy but it's worth it. Game Development is completely a new concept in Bangladesh. It has different segments to work on. Instead of honing your skill into one particular criterion, try to have a solid foundation on other aspects as well. It would make you a great team player. Patience is crucial, don't try to achieve everything overnight. Set your goals, stick with your passion and you’re good to go.

Zero Hour is releasing as Early Access on 12th August 2020.

Steam Store Page: https://store.steampowered.com/app/1359090/Zero_Hour/

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