New WW2 shooter promises 100-player battles that are not "sports-like"

War Thunder publisher Gaijin Entertainment has kicked off a crowdfunding campaign for a new, Second World War-based online FPS called Enlisted. It promises large-scale battles of up to 100 players, spread across massive, destructible battlefields, beginning with the Battle of Moscow and the Invasion of Normandy. Additional campaigns will be added, including one chosen by players, as pre-release sales hit various goals. 

At $250,000, work will begin on the Tunisia campaign, while at $500,000, Gaijin and developer Darkflow Software will add a "players choice" campaign. $750,000 will see the addition of a "game module by players choice," although there's no information about what a "game module" actually is, and at a million bucks Enlisted will also be released for consoles. "It will be a first person shooter decided by the fans, for the fans," producer Alexander Nagorny said. "They will have direct input into what we create, including things like campaigns, game modes, even which platforms after PC we will support." 

Enlisted's big hook is that its campaigns are meant to recreate actual battles, rather than "sports-like competitions," with multiple phases, unequal conditions, and differing goals. "Battles involving equal teams in equal conditions are, of course, interesting as a competition. But they do not have the immersion or the thrill of real battle, where balanced forces and symmetrical objectives are unlikely," the Enlisted website says. "You may be a defender of Moscow in the trenches dug around the city, facing advancing enemy tanks and superior forces, with an objective to hold the enemy, to stop the advancing army in its tracks with all the resources you have." How many enemy players you kill is irrelevant—all that matters is holding the line.

The Battle of Moscow campaign is available for $20 with a modified Model 1891 Moisin rifle, or $22 with an upgraded Mauser 98K. Normandy with the Mauser is the same price, or you can get it with the Springfield M1903 for $25. The individual "collectable" weapons are also available, each offering bonuses over and above the standard in-game firearms: The Moisin has an extended barrel that allows for better long-range accuracy, for instance, while the trench magazine that comes with the Mauser provides a higher rate of fire. A $50 bundle includes both campaigns and all three paid-for weapons, and also early access to the game. 

The Enlisted website says that if the game isn't released for some reason, all funds will be returned to your account, for use in other games like War Thunder or Star Conflict. A rep clarified that the first two Enlisted campaigns are coming out "no matter what," and that the funding campaign is strictly for future expansions. He also confirmed, however, that refunds will be offered if things go wrong (as they sometimes do) and the base game doesn't make it to release. 

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.