Embark Studios’ The Finals debuts on PC and consoles

Embark Studios announced the immediate release of The Finals, a first-person shooter combat entertainment set within a game show.

While the narrative behind the game is like glitzy part of The Hunger Games in terms of being a celebrity sports competition, but the similarities end there. The Finals is a multiplayer-only three-versus-three-versus-three, where there are three teams with three human players each. The game debut was announced at The Game Awards.

Embark Studios, a division of Nexon, describes the game as a free-to-play, team-based, first-person shooter that pushes environmental dynamism, destruction, and player freedom to the limits.

The Finals is a free-to-play first-person shooter where you are in a game show.

The teams fight in a modern city setting, such as Las Vegas, with plenty of destructible environments. I recently played the near-final version of The Finals for about 45 minutes, and it was a hoot. I was a pretty bad shot with guns that weren’t leveled up. I was outgunned by players with grenade launchers and such. And I generally performed pretty poorly overall.

But I really enjoyed the chaos of the fighting, where three teams would converge on the same vault to pick up or the same escape path. I would be checking out a vault all by myself and then I would get picked off by someone two floors above watching through a caved-in ceiling. If your enemy was hiding in a room while guarding a vault, then you could change the game by blowing a hole in the wall.

Kaching! You're playing for money and fame in The Finals.
Kaching! You’re playing for money and fame in The Finals.

The game also encourages style, letting you create your own character and outfits and then earn your way to more and more bling. When you are shot, you turn into a bunch of gold coins for the other team to pick up. It’s all pretty funny. I mentioned this to Nexon CEO Owen Mahoney and he said, “You see, you lost the match and you still had fun.”

The free-to-play, team-based shooter is available now on Steam, Xbox Series X|S, and PlayStation 5. The release sends eager contestants right into Season 1, where they get to celebrate the glitz and glam of Las Vegas — a new virtual arena filled with bright neon lights, slot machines, boxers, UFOs, and more — delivering an all-you-can-eat buffet of destruction and mayhem, and the first hints of the mystery behind the world’s most explosive game show.

“We started Embark to re-imagine how games are made and what they can become. The Finals is our first game to release, and a great embodiment of that vision,” said Gustav Tilleby, creative director, in a statement. “The Finals isn’t another battle royale, military sim, or tactical FPS – there are plenty of those out there. It’s an entirely new take on shooters. It’s been amazing and humbling to see the response from the community over the past year of testing. Now that the game is live, we’re laser-focused on ensuring a great experience for our community, with many surprises along the way.”

In The Finals, contestants compete in virtual arenas based on real-world iconic locations. They battle it out in fully destructible environments powered by Embark’s server-side destruction and movement technology that ensures every player experiences the action simultaneously – whether it’s a piece of furniture being blown apart or an entire building collapsing.

You can customize your character in The Finals.
You can customize your character in The Finals.

As a player, you get to create your own, unique contestant — from stealthy sword-wielding ballerinas to lethal pandas armed with rocket launchers — it’s up to you to decide who you are and how you play.

The best contestants will rely on their intuition as much as their aim, using a combination of the environment, weapons, gadgets, and specializations to defeat their rivals to gain fame and fortune.

The Finals is available now, on Steam, the Xbox Game Store, and the PlayStation Store.

Based in Stockholm, Embark Studios was founded in November 2018 by industry veterans Patrick Söderlund, Rob Runesson, Stefan Strandberg, Jenny Huldschiner, Johan Andersson, and Magnus Nordin. Today Embark Studios has more than 250 game-makers applying breakthrough technologies to reimagine how games are made and what they can become. Mahoney said the remarkable thing about The Finals was that it was made by a team with less than 100 people. Embark is also making the PvPVe survival action shooter ARC Raiders and the creative platform wim.

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