Human Element is Robert Bowling‘s first game at his new digs. We don’t know a lot about it, but we do know that it’s some sort of survival game that’s slated to hit PC and next generation consoles in 2015. Supplemental versions of the game are coming to mobile and tablets, too. In a recent interview, Bowling said that these versions will use some sort of GPS mechanic that will let you dumpster dive in the real world for items that you can transport into your game of Human Element proper.
“Say you’re at home, you’re playing Human Element, you’re out in the world, you get injured," Bowling tells GamesIndustry.biz. “You’re hurt and you need medical supplies. You don’t want to risk going out to forage in the game world, or maybe you did and can’t find anything, but you know that there’s a pharmacy four miles down the road in the real world. So, you go out and you’re out and about in the real world."
“You open up Human Element on your iPad. We’re overlaying the world of Human Element onto the Googlemaps API, FourSquare business API, we’re taking your real world and merging it with your game world. So, now you’re checking into places in the real world and you’re scavenging in those locations for supplies that are dynamic to those locations."
“We can do that anywhere there’s GPS map data," he says.
Additionally, you’ll be able to “form alliances" with other players, letting them do the messy work of scavenging real-world supplies for you.
Robotoki was announced shortly after Bowling left Infinity Ward. Bowling has said that one of Robotoki’s goals is to make games that “transcend" platforms and genres. Universes will be first, mechanics last.
It’ll be interesting to see if Human Element will do, uh, that.