The team at Creative Assembly has unveiled its next game: a “flashy” new multiplayer shooter called Hyenas. It’s the first time in over a decade that the U.K. company has unveiled an original property, making a big jump for the studio behind the Total War series and 2014’s critically acclaimed horror title Alien: Isolation.
Hyenas is a “space piracy smash and grab” set in a dystopian future where five teams of three players each invade “lumbering spaceship shopping malls” to steal loot from the hyper-rich.
The game’s first trailer didn’t show off any gameplay, but did show a vibrant, candy-colored world where players will fight to get in, get loot, and get out. It also shows off an in-depth zero-gravity system that will add an environmental navigation twist to traversal.
It’s a fairly surprising showcase from Creative Assembly. The studio has been a regular presence in parent company Sega’s financial reports, regularly delivering solid revenue with games in the Total War and Total Warhammer series. Aside from Alien: Isolation, the company has only shipped strategy games (most being 4x games, though Halo Wars 2 was a real-time strategy game).
A statement from the studio says that its hope is to “do to shooters what they did to horror with Alien: Isolation.”
A live multiplayer game would give the studio a chance to earn revenue through the games-as-a-service (GaaS) model. Details on gameplay and revenue are not fully available yet, but the studio says it won’t include any “pay-to-win” mechanics. That would imply that any in-game spending opportunities for Hyenas will be based on cosmetic upgrades like “Panini sticker albums, a SEGA Mega Drive, and PEZ dispensers.”
Creative Assembly probably isn’t moving away from the Total War series anytime soon. In 2021, the company opened a third studio in the U.K. to support game production and relocated its motion capture facility to a new and improved location. If you were wondering what motion the company was looking to capture, you’ll probably see it in Hyenas.