Wakerunners, a new MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) game from the devs behind Dave the Diver, is available for a limited time throughout Steam Next Fest.
The demo is playable throughout this month’s digital celebration of upcoming games, which ends on Monday February 12th 2024.
Korean studio Mintrocket says its team battle game differs from other traditional MOBAs in that it has both 4v4 and 5v5 combat, and players have the ability to swap characters mid-battle. It’s positioned more towards the PVP/casual crowd rather than the more hardcore MOBA/strategy gamers.
Wakerunners is set in a dystopian sci-fi future, where a ravaged Earth is now the site of skirmishes between surviving factions.
In terms of esports, a press preview Esports News UK saw featured caster-like commentary throughout a match, implying this may be the sector the game wants to target, but as it’s just a demo right now, it seems too early to think about its potential for esports leagues at this stage.
To accompany the release, the title’s first gameplay trailer has also been revealed.
The Wakerunners demo has five game modes – Team Deathmatch, Control Conquest, Command Siege, Escort and Raider – and seven characters.
There’s balanced characters Dorothy and Jake, support Jia, technical character Schmit, and three damage dealers – Eliza, Lamil and Cara (who hails from Scotland, UK).
Cara is, according to a spokesperson, ‘a major damage dealer. She’s wild, nimble and fearless! She can aggressively breakthrough enemy lines as she eagerly takes the lead in battle’.
With her brightly coloured hair and playful grin, dare we say she also reminds us a little of another eccentric MOBA character – Jinx from League of Legends.
Speaking of Scotland, the country recently had some esports news, with the Scottish Qualifications Authority launching a new NPA esports qualification, and Esports Scotland responding to community criticism, along with a separate announcement on the Scottish government backing a new national games strategy.
Back to Wakerunners, the devs spoke more about the game.
“In contrast to the MOBA genre where growth factors and strategies take center stage, Wakerunners emphasises close-quarters combat, focusing on player reflexes and control of acceleration and deceleration mechanics, as combatants glide across battle arenas at high speeds,” said ChaeHyun Lim, Game Director of Wakeunners.
Lim also said the Wakerunners dev team is distinct from other projects, like Dave the Diver and Nakwon: Last Paradise.
“The studio is comprised of several distinct development teams, each with the freedom to work on projects we are passionate about,” Lim continued. “The studio can’t be pigeonholed or restricted into one genre. However, we are united by a common goal to create immersive experiences that bring joy to players worldwide.”
You can play the Wakerunners demo as part of the Steam Next Fest here. There’s also a Wakerunners Playtest Event with Steam gift card prizes available.
Dom is an award-winning writer and finalist of the Esports Journalist of the Year 2023 award. He graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Federation up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and offer esports consultancy and freelance services. Note: Dom still produces the British Esports newsletter on a freelance basis, so our coverage of British Esports is always kept simple – usually just covering the occasional press release – because of this conflict of interest.