Brendan “PlayerUnknown” Greene, the creator of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, was recently interviewed by GamesBeat and talked about his plans for the future, which include incorporating big, procedurally generated worlds into game design. It starts with the tech demo Prologue, which will hopefully lead to the even bigger Project Artemis.
Prologue refers to a single-player tech demo in a 64-km by 64-km world modeled off of the forests of Europe and able to simulate real-world features like coal mines as they would appear in the real world right down to the scale. Players would be dropped into this world and asked to survive. The monetization would be pay-what-you-want, but the ultimate aim is to push the tech further than is thought possible.
The goal is not only to create a space bigger in size than has ever been attempted before, but to create a believable, dynamic ecosystem. “Red Dead Redemption is fantastic, but it’s just a bunch of scripts,” says Greene. “You go kill all the bears in a region, go away, come back, and they’re all back again. I want to have meaningful life in the world. If you kill all the bears in a region, maybe the deer population explodes.”
This all leads to Project Artemis, an even grander experiment that Greene hopes will be able to create a world the size of an actual planet, complete with different biomes and wildlife. He hopes that the world will be convincing enough that players will build entire cities and cultures. “We want to give people a new place to live, because this one has some issues.”
Whether or not all of this is a pie-in-the-sky dream, or the next frontier of gaming is anyone’s guess, but you can’t fault the ambition on display here. After all, this is the same guy who kicked off the battle royale frenzy a few years ago.