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Helldivers 2 and Valheim collide in stunning new co-op RPG

If you've ever wondered what a colorful mashup of Helldivers 2 and Valheim would look like, it's this stunning new moddable co-op RPG.

A pirate woman with a long purple cloak raises two glowing green hooks on a mountain background

I’m welcomed into a sprawling, colorful forest by Mike Atamas, co-founder and CEO of OCP. He pulls out an axe and begins to chop down some trees, explaining that I’ll need resources if I want to survive and thrive in the team’s upcoming RPG, Project Frontier. At first, I get hints of Valheim and other survival games like Palworld, but there’s one feature of OCP’s adventure that blows that assumption out of the water – there’s some Helldivers 2 lurking in the shadows.

Project Frontier drops you and up to three friends into a beautiful fantasy world and tasks you with surviving. You’ll be able to build bases a la Valheim, then set about exploring, gathering resources, or engaging in some good ol’ PvP – you’re not alone, after all. Form alliances with other groups, take down your foes, or simply create your ideal fantasy settlement – as long as you box off your mandatory quest, you can do whatever you like.

But, unlike Valheim and other survival games, you’ll have to achieve all of this in a limited time – that’s where the Helldivers 2 twist comes in. Similar to Helldivers’ system, you’ll only have a limited amount of time (around 40 minutes) to complete your mission before you’re whisked away and have to start all over again.

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You begin your adventure with limited gear and resources, which you’ll slowly upgrade over time. But thankfully Project Frontier cuts out some of the grindiness, as you’ll have a moving base (think Deep Rock Galactic) and the option to automate resource collection using extractors.

When you complete your mission, you’ll be able to continue farming and picking up new loot. All of this will contribute to your score at the end of the session – but note that each world is procedurally generated, so you won’t be able to start a new game and go back and collect all of the same gear all over again.

What makes Project Frontier truly unique, however, is the fact that you can mod it live. I watch, speechless, as Atamas pauses the game, opening up a new menu where you can mod to your heart’s content. The toolset is fully integrated into the game, and while Atamas promises that modding technically won’t break things, the gameplay can get “really stupid.”

“It was our dream as kids to be able to change the games we played and make them our own,” co-founder and CTO Nick Atamas tells me in an interview with PCGamesN. “We’ve been working to make this dream a reality and are very excited to finally start sharing it with players.”

A man wearing a traditional Asian hat looks out over a lake in a pretty forest area

As someone who’s been lucky enough to peek behind the curtain, Project Frontier certainly has me intrigued. I’ve never really thought about putting a time limit on the survival genre before, but as an avid League of Legends player, I like the type of competition it encourages. The ability to mod during live play is also pretty damn cool, and allows you to truly let your creativity run wild – I can’t wait to cause absolute chaos.

If Project Frontier has you intrigued, OCP has opened sign-ups for playtesting, giving you a chance to try the game out for yourself. You can sign up here.

Until then, however, we have a list of all the best multiplayer games if you’re looking for something new to play with your pals. Alternatively, if it’s the fantastical elements of Project Frontier that intrigue you, we have a list of all the best fantasy games, too.

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