S.W.A.P (Subterfuge Weapons Assessment Program) is an indirect first-person shooter for PC and Mac. It features competitive multiplayer with an emphasis on strategic thinking and cooperation between team-mates. The players are armed with no guns and no direct ways to harm each other – so exactly how is that an FPS?
S.W.A.P revolves around one core mechanic: swapping. Swapping involves launching a projectile that allows you to exchange bodies with any opponent that it hits. This, combined with deadly traps in the level, allows you to disorient and destroy your enemies while moving around the arena with greater swiftness.
The game features online multiplayer that supports up to 8 players in 2 teams. Players star in an arena where they compete to deliver a virus to their opponents base (like a reverse capture-the-flag game mode). There are over 15 levels built from 8 different tiles, and all of the game’s content is unlocked at the start.
S.W.A.P also includes a level editor where players can create their own arenas. Custom-made levels are sent to all players when they join a match, which makes it easier to play together.
S.W.A.P began as a student project led by Chaos Theory’s Nico King during his final year at AIE. The original team of 8 devised the swapping mechanic within the context of a single-player horror game. It was only after the multiplayer component was developed that they ‘found the fun’.
The early prototype exhibited at EB Expo 2013, where it received an overwhelmingly positive response. It’s non-violent nature hit a chord with a younger audience present at the exhibition. Based on this feedback, Nico wished for S.W.A.P’s further development, but the team’s graduation shortly afterwards thinned them down to 2 remaining members.
S.W.A.P was then adopted as a Chaos Theory project, but only developed part-time throughout the next 9 months. The game was released for free on Windows in September 2014, and later for Mac in October 2014. The final release was shown off at EB Expo 2014, where it received widespread press coverage.
The game continues to be playable today, but it failed to reach the critical mass required for perpetual matchmaking.
Official Launch Trailer
Awards & Recognition
Most Impressive Advanced Diploma Game Project
– Academy of Interactive Entertainment, November 2013
It’s one of the most unique twists we’ve seen on the competitive first-person shooter.
– Jeffrey Matulef, EuroGamer
It appears to have inherited the frantic, twitch-oriented pace of ye olde arena shooters like Unreal Tournament and Quake.
– Shaun Prescott, PCGamer
S.W.A.P. is very much an FPS, though refreshingly one that doesn’t come with a shoot-to-kill mechanic. Yes, it’s a pacifist’s dream.
– Konstantinos Dimopoulos, Rock, Paper, Shotgun
A reimagining of the FPS genre.
– Nathan Manning, Analog Addiction
Unlike other FPS games out there.
– Luke Siuty, Indie Game Mag
A rather novel first-person shooter
– Cyber, Death By Beta
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