Monaco seemed to linger in development limbo forever because it received attention from the IGF early in its production process. In reality, it took 3.5 years to come out. Schatz's new project, codenamed Armada, is a vague concept at this point: He has a clear vision for the design, but the theme, style and development team – not to mention the name – are all still up in the air. He announced it anyway.
"I don't care this time because, fuck it," Schatz tells me at GDC.
He's not going to release a game until "it's worth buying," but this time around he plans to throw Armada up on Steam Early Access and get player feedback. Monaco launched on XBLA, so Early Access was out of the question.
Schatz isn't shooting completely in the dark with Armada – he knows what type of game it's going to be, and he has an idea for the theme. He wants to build an RTS with MOBA elements, something accessible yet still complex. In the way Monaco twisted the stealth genre, he wants Armada to feel familiar to RTS players, but with layers that smooth out the learning curve. He throws around the name StarCraft, and elements such as "champions" and "decks."