DayZ creator Dean Hall announces new game Ion

UPDATE: "It's now about me proving I have learned lessons and we deliver on stuff."

UPDATE 17TH JUNE: Dean Hall has talked more about what Ion, his new game, will be. He started by saying his space game won't be Star Citizen, won't be Elite, won't be Eve Online.

Ion will be about owning regions of space and building space stations there, and surviving. And you'll view it from a zoomed out third-person perspective similar to Diablo. It's not first-person, to be clear.

You'll be a pioneer in space, and walk around space stations, and these space stations will exist in stitched together, persistent regions of space.

Hall has Early Access aspirations for Ion but obviously that's a sensitive subject for him coming from DayZ. He said he wants to ensure the game has a polished core before it's shown.

Poignantly, he said, "It's now about me proving I have learned lessons and [that] we deliver on stuff."

Mind you, he wasn't shy to share what had been his favourite bug in the game so far. Apparently when you clicked on another player all their organs fell out which, it being a persistent game, caused problems.

We spoke to Dean Hall following the PC Gaming Show show and he explained Ion in much more detail. Look out for a fuller picture of his game after E3.

ORIGINAL STORY 15TH JUNE: The charismatic DayZ creator Dean Hall has announced his new game Ion on Microsoft's E3 stage.

It's coming first to PC and Xbox One - no mention of exclusivity. And it's "coming soon", although with no gameplay footage of any kind, only a vague teaser, it seems like it's a long way off.

"I want a game that is not a game - I want a game that is a universe," Hall announced as he walked onto the stage. "A universe built not on scripts or quests, but on the laws of physics, biology, and chemistry. A simulation MMO that explores mankind's expansion into space; the chance to be a pioneer in a harsh universe swamped with the risk of death yet peppered with the havens of fortune."

shrinkwrapped
Let's call it Dean Hall's Shrink-Wrapped Human Game instead.

Hall said he has been making Ion, a long-term prototype of his, for the past year (he left Bohemia at the beginning of 2015). He - his new studio RocketWerkz - has been working with Improbable Studios in London on the game's technology.

He said he wants Xbox One Game Preview members (Microsoft's new Early Access style initiative) and PC gamers to govern Ion's destiny. Is he hinting at in-development input, or a game mechanic by which players can shape their world?

On the Xbox YouTube channel, a video blurb stated: "From the creator of DayZ and inspired by the cult favourite Space Station 13, Ion is an emergent narrative massively-multiplayer online game in which players will build, live in and inevitably die in huge floating galactic constructions as humanity makes its first steps colonising the universe.

"Technology from Improbable allows Ion to have a massive interconnected universe with fully simulated environments such as power grids, air pressure and heat - all to help stave off the unending vacuum of space. First on PC and Xbox One Game Preview Program."

It was also announced during the conference that DayZ will come to Xbox One - the first rock solid confirmation we've had that it is.

The Ion trailer was a teaser that zoomed out from a space close-up, tagging objects of interests along the way. The suggestion was that space is a big place oh yes it is. There's an Ion website with little more than social media links and the teaser trailer.

On the game's Facebook page there is the following message: "This is a station wide announcement. The Federation would like to remind you that it is the job of the user to keep their clone in functioning order. Failure to do so may result in termination of both."

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Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

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