So, gameplay footage of the debut project being developed by contentious streamer Dr. Disrespect’s recently formed studio is now floating around online. Dubbed a “vertical extraction shooter” that the Doc has claimed will blow Call of Duty’s engine outta the water, the NFT game, titled Deadrop, does have an intriguing premise but currently looks rough around the edges.
Midnight Society is the development house founded by Guy “Dr. Disrespect” Beahm, who previously worked as a level designer at Call of Duty studio Sledgehammer Games, and several other veteran AAA game makers. The studio has been working on Deadrop, previously called “Project Moon,” for a little while now. However, on July 29, videos of the game started circulating on Twitter and YouTube as early supporters of the game who were granted access to a tech demo beta began sharing their experiences. Videos of the beta, officially called a “snapshot” by Midnight Society, don’t have much to them. Playing out in first-person, they primarily show a soldier shooting their way through a couple of dimly-lit shooting ranges with an M16-style assault rifle while ascending what appears to be some sort of skyscraper.
But the question remains: What even is this game? According to Midnight Society’s website, Deadrop will be “the most community-focused, online PVP multiplayer experience the world has ever seen.” What it’s being billed as is more straightforward: an ascending battle royale rather than a sprawling one. Think Escape From Tarkov mixed with PUBG and you’ll get the idea. The premise seems to be that you’ll shoot your way through AI- and player-controlled enemies to be the first to reach the top of the tower for immediate extraction. This intrigues me. While I’m not the best FPS player out there—I mean, I am blind—I enjoy frantic firefights in smol spaces. The quick movements, the split-second decision-making, the racing heartbeat, the death. It’s a brief yet exhilarating moment, and if Deadrop can capture that freneticism, then this might be a solid battle royale.
However, what we’re looking at is pretty mid right now. Of course, Deadrop is currently in development, so there’s plenty of time for Midnight Society to refine it. Still, the stiff animations, bland environments, and sluggish player movements aren’t mind-blowing. There’s certainly nothing here that blows Call of Duty’s engine away, as Dr. Disrespect said the game would during a livestream a couple of months after Modern Warfare 2 was revealed, and I don’t even like CoD that much.
You can’t forget about the NFTs that are attached to Deadrop, too. In fact, that’s the only way to play a snapshot of the game at the present moment: Buying a goddamn NFT. While that does taint my interest in what Midnight Society is building, the core idea is compelling enough for me to watch it closely. We’ll see what Deadrop becomes as development progresses.