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Published on Feb 17, 2014

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Escapist News Now with Andrea Rene
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Sign up for the Chroma closed alpha here: www.playchroma.com

Titled Chroma, the arena shooter is Harmonix's first PC game. It is a fast-paced, multiplayer focused game that defies everything you think you know about shooters. They are co-developing the title with Hidden Path Entertainment who are taking point on the shooting mechanics while Harmonix adds unique musicality to the game.

There will be a variety of classes that each act as different musical component on the team, kind of like different band members. Different classes focus on either FPS mechanics or beat matching. There is Assault, Sneak, Tank, Engineer, and Support. The Assault, Support, and Tank classes seemed to be the easiest to pick up for FPS players, while the Sneak and Engineer were more musically focused.

Harmonix said the goal was to make the classes approachable to FPS players, but more powerful to players who used the music, such as firing the Sneak's sniper rifle on the downbeat for a one-hit kill, or by tapping the beat while firing the Tank's rocket launcher to guide the missile to its target.

There are also "Change-ups" during each match, musical breaks in the song that dynamically change the structure of the map to add obstacles like water or raised pillars. Part of learning the maps in Chroma is learning the songs for each arena.

There will be a variety of game modes like "Cart Push" where each team takes control of a cart to send it to their base on the map, in a sort of tug-of-war.

Like many free-to-play developers they firmly stand by their no pay-to-win policy. Instead monetization will include cosmetic customization options for each character and sound packs for various weapons. You can choose to have your guns sound electronic, or perhaps you prefer rock tones? Each team member will contribute to the overall sound of their group during matches as more layers of music are added to base track of the arena.

Intrigued? Chroma will be having a closed alpha on Steam starting this month with a public beta opening later this year. Like many free-to-play games there is no specific release date as updates will occur periodically throughout the beta period.


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