Rising Thunder, the indie fighting game canceled in its alpha phase of development in 2016, will live on through one final build, with open-source server code, the game’s developers said today.
The build will be called Rising Thunder: Community edition and developer Radiant Entertainment is leaving it in the hands of the community to continue to play and improve.
Rising Thunder was announced in 2015; its development team has a rich pedigree in the fighting games community. Tom and Tony Cannon, who founded the Evo fighting game tournament series, founded Radiant Entertainment and were Rising Thunder’s co-directors. Seth Killian, the fighting games champion, commentator and advocate who worked for Capcom during Street Fighter 4’s development, was its producer.
However, Riot Games, maker of League of Legends, acquired Radiant Entertainment in March of 2016. Development on Rising Thunder closed shortly thereafter. Fans however, have continued to lobby for bringing the game back, leading to this afternoon’s announcement.
In a note on the Rising Thunder subreddit, Killian said Radiant Entertainment was releasing the final build with some improvements — including offline local play. Local play will be keyboard versus controller only, Killian said, “but it should be straightforward to hack in [one-player] controller support through external scripting.”
Rising Thunder was a fighting game predicated on the idea that the genre is intimidatingly complicated, so a keyboard is a viable controller. The creators sought to simplify the game’s control set to the point that users didn’t need to commit complicated move sets to memory. The combatants were robot characters who had the means to equip a loadout, pre-match, of “variants” that modified and upgraded their abilities.
Rising Thunder’s final build will be accompanied by source code for an open-source version of the game’s server so players can still play in match-made games online. Killian said the code is “a first pass at a bare-bones server that will allow you to play online with rudimentary matchmaking and limited features.”