Retro-styled first-person shooters are definitely a thing right now, with stuff like Ion Fury and Dusk making way for droves of similar games. I'm not complaining. Nor am I complaining that the latest retro FPS to be announced, Dread Templar, has one of the most hilariously perfunctory settings you could dream up for a shooting game.
"You are a Dread Templar who entered Hell seeking revenge," reads the trailer description. "But in order to get it, you have to fight your way through the dark realm!" Hell yeah! Just leave it at that, would you please?
The game is developed by T19 Games, and used to be known as Hell Hunt, for which there is still a demo on Itch. Dread Templar is definitely a better name, though it does wend rather too closely into lore-bearing territory. What is a dread templar? Hopefully the game will waste no time explaining.
As the trailer above demonstrates, the art style sits firmly in the Quake engine tradition, and in addition to the usual array of firepower you can also wield a katana. There are weapon skills to unlock, dashing and bullet time, so it definitely adds some flavour to the format, while staying very true to the atmosphere of the 1990s.
The game will launch into Early Access this fall (spring in Australia) and is expected to launch into 1.0 in 2022. Here’s the Steam page if you want to keep an eye on it. In the meantime, if you’re craving a ye olde styled FPS you could check out Dusk, or Ion Fury, or Prodeus, or Amid Evil.