Former Infinity Ward creative strategist Robert Bowling's upcoming multi-platform open-world zombie game The Human Element will allow players to collect resources by exploring the real world.
Portable versions of the game will use GPS tracking to reward players with location-based bonuses, Bowling revealed in an interview with Games Industry International. Players can then share items acquired on the mobile version with its console brethren via cross-platform play.
"Say you're at home, you're playing Human Element, you're out in the world, you get injured. 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."
Bowling explained that this concept will be used in multiplayer too, where players can share items across different devices.
"Say my girlfriend doesn't want to play the console experience but she wants to play on iPad - she likes that experience. If we have an alliance she can play the resource management game, that scavenging mechanic, and she can be benefiting my game by sharing supplies with my survivors."
The Human Element will be the debut game by Bowling's newly formed studio Robotoki. It's due in 2015 for next gen consoles, PC, mobile and tablets.