New Indian battle royale multiplayer game, ‘Auto Raja’, includes picturesque Indian streets

An auto-rickshaw is a motorised version of the hand-pulled rickshaw or cycle rickshaw and in India, one might come across it in numbers in almost every nook and corner. In Mumbai, a larger portion of the mass is literally dependent on it for the daily commute. And often passengers who travel by rickshaw, come across brawls among the rickshaw pullers. The competition of rickshaw drivers to get passengers first are a common sight every day. Probably this thought triggered Hyderabad based gaming studio, BornMonkie, established in 2018, to launch their game Auto Raja on the MPL platform next month. AutoRaja is Indian .io style multiplayer battle royale game according to the studio with a story mode where one gets to play as a third-person perspective, racing around AutoNagar in the Rickshaw by picking up passengers and blasting away the competition. In conversation with AnimationXpress, BornMonkie VP J Pavan Kumar Reddy who works as a 3D artist and as a game designer says, “We wanted to create games with an Indian background. During the college days when I used to travel in autos, as it was more convenient and we have observed that auto drivers’ fight for their passengers and how they are counting their fellow auto drivers as competition. Then it triggered us to create a game around auto rickshaw, where there will be a mix blend of passengers and the beauty of the Indian streets. That was the main concept behind Auto Raja.He believes that autos are the best mode of transportation, and so, one has to be on toes to survive in this competition — the more passengers a player will earn, more score he/she will make, ultimately resulting in victory in the game! The crux of the game is when a player gets to play as an auto-driver driving a ‘Turreted Tuk-Tuk’, with more auto-rickshaws and a rebel union formed through the storyline of the game. The last person standing with the highest number of score wins. The game designing process is mesmerizingly unique as they have travelled from places to click real-life pictures as a reference to create the realistic-looking computer-generated environment, objects for the game. From Char Minar, to food carts, to ice cream carts, it has it all! Added he, “We went to shoot the locations of the old city, Hyderabad and collected references of local buildings, props to make the environment look closer to Indian style. Gathering all the references and info we moved to the next step which is modelling them all.” The steps that they  kept in mind while designing the game are as follows:
  • Laying out the large-scale features of the map, for players and enemies to move around in.
  • Determining environmental conditions and ‘ground rules’ such as scoring systems, allowable weapons or gameplay types, time limits, and starting resources.
  • Specifying certain regions where certain gameplay activities or behaviours occur.
  • Specifying non-static parts of a level, such as and buttons with associated mechanisms, Specifying locations of various entities, such as player units, enemies, monster spawn points, resource nodes, weapons, save points, and so on;
  • Specifying the start and exit locations for one or more players;
  • Adding aesthetic details such as level-specific graphic textures, sounds, animation, lighting and music;
  • Introducing scripted event locations, where certain actions by the player can trigger specified changes;
  • Placing the pathfinding nodes.
The game is mainly targeted to mobile platforms. “Most of the Indian multiplayer gamers are mobile gamers. By 2020, the count is expected to reach 326 million. If we can target even one per cent of the gamers, the number would be 3.26 million players,” he noted. They have spent around Rs 6 lakhs to complete the game and they have initiated the development process from April 2019. In addition to that, they are also planning to launch the game on Steam platform and for that, they are shifting from unity engine to unreal engine for better design support. As JP mentioned, “In multiplayer  combat game, the quality of  the content should be great  if we are planning to shift in PC, Unity can’t deliver that quality, thus we are shifting to Unreal.” The developers researched on the internet about various styles of Autos available all over the world. Then they have finalised four Popular Autos which includes – Classic Indian Auto, Cartoon Auto, Coco Taxi, Autopunk 2077. Apart from that, there are three types of weapons available and that includes Fire Goli, Boomer Gun, 100 Wala Shots. The studio recently did a soft launch of their game and soon they will be launching on MPL platform. Stay tuned, as we have received a secret apk file of the game to try out ourselves will keep you posted with the review!