Betrayer: stylish FPS from former F.E.A.R. developers announced

Monday, 5th August 2013 14:13 GMT By Dave Cook

Betrayer is the debut project from the former Monolith developers behind F.E.A.R. and No One Lives Forever that make up Blackpowder Games. It’s a noir-esque FPS set in a monochromatic depiction of colonial Virginia.

PC Gamer has the game’s debut trailer here, and you may agree that the visual style smacks of Platinum Games’ Wii brawler Madworld.

It’s an FPS set in 1604 and based within an American wilderness teeming with undead soldiers who have emerged from a mysterious British encampment. Players can piece together the plot by searching for artefacts scattered across the black and white world, while objects of interest are highlighted in red to create a striking visual style.

The game’s gunplay component sees players wielding muskets, crossbows and throwing axes as they journey across the uncharted wilds of the New World.

Speaking with the site about the game’s colonial setting, creative lead Craig Hubbard said, “The social situation of that time was really interesting, I don’t know if you’ve read about what it was like to be in the Pilgrim colonies, like if you broke the law, but they’d like… pile stones on you until you died. It was just brutal and horrific and that’s great subject matter for an atmospheric and eerie game.”

On the visual style, CEO and UI designer Larry Paolicelli added, “When we turned it off and when we went back to color, we missed the tension. We missed being in that world. We’d do playtesting, and we’d show people both, and they liked the black and white better, because of that tension, because of that sense of mystery.”

The game will indeed be tense, because when you die your loot stays on your corpse and must be retrieved once you respawn. The game’s handling was also likening to Far Cry 3, and the campaign was confirmed to be around the five-hour mark.

Do you think the game looks mysterious so far? You can check out the Blackpowder Games site for more information, and the game itself will hit Steam Early Access on August 14 at $15.

Thanks GAF.



  1. Ali

    Finally …. monolith was allowed to do its own thing instead of creating games fir overdone ips …

    Day1… hope it lands on consoles

    Edit: Just realized that those are former devs… oh well, still day 1.

    #1 1 year ago
  2. YoungZer0

    Look good enough. Too bad the setting isn’t europe.

    #2 1 year ago
  3. Aullah

    My eyes hurt when I watch these screenshots. Guess Im not the target audience.

    #3 1 year ago
  4. Ali

    @2 I totally agree.Not a fan of American settings. They are just boring. Duh AC3 jumped to my mind.

    #4 1 year ago
  5. YoungZer0

    @4: Yeah, AC3 just reaffirmed my belief that unless natives are heavily involved the setting just isn’t interesting. Europe would be the perfect setting considering red riding hood is also in the game. :P

    #5 1 year ago
  6. Sadismek

    @3 Ha, same here. Too “stilish” for me :P.

    @4 I agree with you, but I don’t know if AC3 was the best example you could’ve chosen. I actually thought the setting was pretty neatly done. It was the gameplay and the plethora of bugs that stained the game, not the setting.

    #6 1 year ago
  7. manamana

    While black&white can make for a creepy mood, the typography and the way it’s used, is horrible.

    #7 1 year ago
  8. Darksider123


    #8 1 year ago
  9. xino

    why the hell is it for PC online? wtf?

    #9 1 year ago
  10. DSB

    I could barely stand to watch the trailer. I really couldn’t imagine playing a game that looked like that.

    An original Monolith style shooter would be pretty great right about now though.

    #10 1 year ago
  11. Phoenixblight


    Yeah its too Monochromatic for me. The red for enemies is cool but I would have added some color to the player’s side of things. The black and white is too harsh, maybe similar to SIn City would have been ideal. I dunno its a hard call. Just not doing it for me.

    #11 1 year ago
  12. fearmonkey

    I’m so glad Monolith is doing something, but I wish they would skip this and make a new Shogo.

    This looked interesting but the trailer looked extremely alpha and unpolished. I hope it gets better because this looks really early in the development. While I like the idea of a balck and white game, the graphics are going to alienate alot of people, and im not sure thats a smart move for them.

    #12 1 year ago
  13. TheWulf

    I admire their guts, I’ll say that from the outset. It takes a lot of courage to do something new, especially when humans are cowardly little things that thrive in their comfort zones. So I have an inborn respect for creative courage, especially where money and the threat of failure are involved.

    So it’s fair to say I admire them. They’ve made something that isn’t a grey-brown entertainment-trash game. That’s good. However, I’m also a long time fan of noir, and I’ve seen no end of noir films and productions. So the back of my mind is just banging on that what they’re showing here isn’t actually noir, it’s just monochrome.

    This reminds me more of that one Wii game which I can never remember the name of, that Suda51 one. And I believe they were also going for a noir style, but once again that was really just monochrome. I don’t know whether it’s a limitation of the technology (which it might just be), but noir is more about a subtle play of light and shadow.

    I can see how they’re trying, but the shifts between light and shadow here are too stark. I think it could almost be there, it just needs a lot more work and better lighting/shadow tech, if possible.

    I suppose it’s important to look at film noir stuff to see how this should work. If you’re going to call something noir, then you actually have to make the effort to try and capture what noir is.

    So… I admire them, and I think they’re gutsy, but their game isn’t quite there yet.

    #13 1 year ago
  14. YoungZer0

    It’s FarCry 3 in Black & White, with contrast set to Eye-Cancer-Mode in a boring setting. Courageous.

    #14 1 year ago
  15. Agt_Pendergast

    @ 13

    I think your thinking of Madworld, and that was Platinum not Suda.

    #15 1 year ago

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