BulletVille Beautifully Blends Parkour with Fast-Paced Shootouts

BulletVille is a third-person, team-hero shooter that borrows mechanics from some of our favorite games and puts a unique twist on the genre. The game is currently in beta testing, and you can try it out for yourself by joining their discord!

We were lucky enough to sit down with the founding team to get an exclusive look at the upcoming title. Keep reading to find out more about how the game is being developed and where it’ll go in the future!

Meet the BulletVille Founding Team

Yohami Zerpa, CEO / Lead Developer | LEADER. FOUNDER

Yohami was making Flash banners back in 2002 and eventually started making mini-games. He created small games for other websites and got heavy into development when Flash started picking up steam. 

As gaming on Facebook started to get more popular, Yohami also created some games on the social platform. He did this for about 15 years until Flash died, at which point, he picked up Unity. 

Yohami considered building a mobile title where he could design a platform with all the classic elements – double jumps, wall running, swinging, etc. In 2017, he decided to transfer these mechanics into a full-blown 3D shooter! 

Tim Brackrock, NOWWA Representative Office Frankfurt | MD. PARTNER. FINANCE

Tim grew up with the classic era of gaming, enjoying the early successes of Atari and the NES. He was involved with programming teams that worked on Moon Patrol, which helped paved the way for future platformers.

His architectural background made him curious about what was possible with 3D graphics. When Tim met Yohami, he really liked his style and what he was doing with the Unreal Engine. Fast forward to today and Tim is the primary financial backer of BulletVille to ensure the team can focus on creating the best game possible!

LEADER. FOUNDER
Yohami Zerpa
Liechtenstein
MD. PARTNER. FINANCE
Tim X. Brackrock
Liechtenstein / Germany

BulletVille’s History

How’d you come up with the name NOWWA?

Yohami had been purchasing URLs for a long time, and had actually picked up the domain for NOWWA back in 2005. Inspired by Newgrounds, the idea was to have a platform where people could submit ideas and vote on them. 

Originally, the basis for NOWWA was to create a space where the masses could submit content, get honest reviews, and make it to the front page. Yohami still believes there’s a need for this space, but NOWWA evolved to the development studio we see today – Now, Winners Announced.

Asked to comment on the tagline, Yohami said “We are the winners and are here to take the stage!”.

How would you describe BulletVille in one sentence?

Parkour hero shooter with high mobility, crazy gunfights, and heroes.

https://twitter.com/NowwaCorp/status/1250199711463677960

Tells us about the lore of BulletVille.

Yohami came up with the basics and had a writer, Reese, who took these high-level ideas and fleshed them out with more details. Yohami created the rules and Reese added layers of storytelling.

We see BulletVille was inspired by older arena shooters. What titles did you draw inspiration from?

If you let developers do the coolest things they want to do in the game, then you’ll end up with cats riding dinosaurs shooting lasers 

The challenge was to create an excuse that allows him to blend the coolest things that he’s seen from pop culture – Victorian horror, cyberpunk parrots, cyber ninjas, among other things. 

Yohami was also influenced by the popular show, Firefly, appreciating the cowboys in space aesthetic. For BulletVille, each planet has different cultures and associated backstories. If you’ve ever played through a Borderlands title, you’ll likely be a fan of what BulletVille is creating!

Will there be cross-platform play and cross saves?

Yes, this is the idea currently since the idea has really begun to catch on in the Unreal Engine last year.

Do you see BulletVille fitting into the eSports scene?

This would be fantastic to have eventually

New Montana sounds like an epic place for mayhem! What made you go in this direction with the design and story?

Yohami created New Montana to be the new wild west. It’s very far from the other human civilizations, there’s a lot of contraband, treasures, and chaos.

Can you tell us about your roadmap for additional heroes, maps, modes, etc.?

Yes, there are currently 8 heroes and they will add 5 more heroes who are important for completing the lore. Upcoming heroes include:

  • A big law enforcer guy
  • A small child called Wolfie who was raised in an area of the map that represents mad max
  • A pig who is collecting and trading items
  • A support character fox who looks like someone from the 70s (pulp fiction aesthetic)
  • An alien priest who is a magician that doesn’t use guns and he floats. 

BulletVille has been in development for about 8 years and had originally started as a voxel game. Yohami faced early criticism about his own character development, with the community drawing comparisons between his designs and McCree from Overwatch

He shifted the cowboy vibes to BulletVille’s cabaret dancer hero and transformed Hunter into a space pirate. This meant adding an eye patch and making him more cybernetic. Even with all the edits to make Hunter unique, Apex Legends just ended up stealing the character!

Yohami takes hero development very seriously and commissioned an artist to create 12 variations of the character he envisioned. He provided some direction on how he’d like the hero to turn out:

  • Macho guy with a mustache
  • White hair a la Cruella de Vil
  • Skulls inspired by The Punisher, but not located on his bandana

Out of these 12 designs, Yohami grabbed the features that he liked the most and combined the best elements. The result was Hunter, a wild-tempered space bandit who grew up committing petty crimes.

BulletVille Map

Who is BulletVille made for?

This game was originally for Yohami. It’s now for gamers who are in their teens to 20s. When he was playing Quake back in the day for 4 hours at a time, he truly enjoyed his gaming sessions. That game has a high skill ceiling while still being accessible. The aesthetic of BulletVille isn’t as hardcore as Call of Duty, and will likely appeal to a more casual gamer who is excited by the deep game lore.

BulletVille’s Future

Any early fan favorites from the hero pool?

Hunter is the face of the game because he’s generic, but I don’t think he’s anybody’s favorite. My favorite character is Willy Punch (influenced by Yohami’s prior development) – he is the only one who doesn’t use weapons. Another fan favorite is K-05, who uses melee weapons.

Will there be new skins for each character?

Skins are already in the works!

Will there be a ranked mode?

There will be a ranked mode eventually. As far as other game modes, they are looking to clone what works. BulletVille started with deathmatch since it’s the easiest to code, but will have capture the flag, dominion, battle royale/king of the hill, payload, and gym rush from Brawl Stars in the future. The team is also working on a mode with only vehicles, with influences from Borderlands.

What are you most looking forward to adding to the Battle Pass?

Yohami doesn’t want to go the pay-to-win route. There will be a battle pass, but the items will primarily be aesthetic for players to customize their heroes. 

Will the difficulty of characters be explicitly stated like the Overwatch star system or left to the players to figure out?

I don’t really like that concept. This game is a platformer where every character can move the same way. The characters aren’t going to be easier or harder to play, but each hero will have a different skill set.

What are your thoughts on fan art?

I love fan art. Every time I see it, I feel good. If you can make something that influences people to create art, that’s a great thing.

BulletVille Fan Art Courtesy of Joe Atilano

Rapid-Fire Questions

Thoughts on The Crucible?

When I saw The Crucible with a very tiny cat-like character, I was concerned. Amazon has a ton of resources to make things perfect. The game reminded me of Bleeding Edge – it looked like the coolest thing until I saw the gameplay. People don’t really like brawlers. You need guns to do things correctly so I knew it was going to fail. If you are playing Crucible and pause the gameplay, it’s hard to detect who the hero is because of the aesthetics and palette choices. It’s very hard to decipher what is going on, which makes it difficult to grow viewership. Crucible should add more guns.

Mario or Sonic

  • Yohami: Mario
  • Tim: Mario for the aesthetics 

PlayStation or Xbox

  • Yohami: PlayStation
  • Tim: PlayStation. I hate Microsoft and Linux

RPGs or Action-Adventure

  • Yohami: Both
  • Tim: Action

Mortal Kombat or Street Fighter

Best Mario Kart game ever?

  • Yohami: The Wii U version of Mario Kart 8
  • Tim:  “Pass”

Best Zelda game ever?

  • Yohami: Ocarina of Time
  • Tim: “Also pass”

Favorite old school (pre-2000) shooter?

  • Yohami: Quake 3 Arena
  • Tim: Doom or Mission Impossible

Favorite game right now?

  • Yohami: Doesn’t have time outside of development, but he likes Borderlands 3
  • Tim: Also not gaming currently

Keyboard and mouse or controller?

  • Yohami: Keyboard and Mouse
  • Tim: Same

What’s Next for BulletVille

The game is currently in pre-alpha, and you can round up a game pretty easily by jumping in the Discord already approaching 150k users at the time of this publication. It’ll go into the next alpha staged in March, run for about 4 months, and then the team will implement changes for the beta. BulletVille is slated for an October 2020 release in Early Access, but you’ve got plenty of time to practice before then!

We’re glad we had an opportunity to sit down with Yohami and Tim and will be uploading our own BulletVille gameplay soon. Make sure to sign up for news on their site and stay tuned for future updates!

BulletVille hero Orion

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