Details about what to expect from the showcase are thin on the ground but, as it’s the first time the studio has ever decided it was worth holding a conference, speculation is already rife on what may be revealed.
The title most expect to be announced is Fallout 4, rumours of which have been flying for years. After a couple of years of rumors, including a reference from a voice actor in 2013, a trademark for Fallout 4 in Europe, and even a website that ended up being a hoax, leaked documents back in 2013 suggested the title would be set in Massachusetts. Now, if denizens of the web are to be believed, we could be mere months from finding out for certain.
While there’s an outlying chance we could be seeing a new Elder Scrolls title, it seems unlikely given The Elder Scrolls Online will have just hit consoles and Skyrim only arrived four years ago. Considering the last Fallout game arrived in 2010, we’ve been waiting slightly longer for a new one of those.
There’s plenty of other options too, of course. Dishonored came out in 2012 and demand for a sequel has been high, while we’re still waiting for more information on Doom. As for last year’s Wolfenstein: The New Order and The Evil Within though, they probably came out too recently to merit sequel announcements already.
If anyone can restore essence to the genre, Mikami can. The characteristically subdued Resident Evil creator is returning to his old stomping ground with the debut game from his Tokyo-based studio Tango Gameworks, the third-person survival horror The Evil Within. And while the game may not adhere to all the ideals we recognize from the genre’s golden age – which, let’s face it, were shakily defined in the first place – it’s built around Mikami’s own definition of the genre he helped create.
“There are a lot of survival horror games nowadays, but the thing that I want to focus on is having the perfect balance between horror and action.”
That perfect balance, in Mikami’s opinion, is what makes ‘pure’ survival horror.
The Evil Within certainly has the set-up to deliver on Mikami’s promises. Its premise is a cliché, but it would be misleading to suggest the game is; the poster for The Evil Within plastered around the colourful walls of Tango’s office depicts a brain wrapped in barbed wire. It’s in this image that its mental asylum spookhouse setting develops new meaning, one more sinister than the threat of things that go bump in the night.
“Thematically, it’s less about having twists and turns and more about maintaining an air of mystery,” explains Mikami. “So through the story you learn a little bit more, and then a little bit more, but the more you learn, you also realize there’s far more mystery out there to unfold.”
“We’re paying a lot of attention to the theatrical and cinematic aspects of the game,” says Mikami. “We want the game to be scary so we want to support that throughout the game experience, but we don’t want to go so far as to impact on the flow of gameplay. We want the controls and the way players interact with the controls and the game to feel scary and cinematic, but not cumbersome. So once you get on more of the action elements you want players to focus on that. So you’ll see something of a wave, you’re drifting from one end to the other end – from cinematic elements to purely gameplay elements and back and forth.”
It’s clear that the developers are aiming for a careful balance of not only action and horror, but of the old and the new, weaving classic survival horror tropes with new and interesting psychological horror features. And it’s all wrapped up, of course, in a state-of-the-art package (on both current and next-gen technology), resulting in a game that has that Resident Evil-era Mikami vibe, but feels much, much richer overall.
“15 or 20 years ago, characters in video games were walking around like robots, and the games were very linear, but now you’re able to put in a much greater detail into the character and it really adds to the immersion,” says Mikami.
“Horror as a genre has a set number of patterns, and the more time you spend with those patterns the more you get used to them. And the more used to those patterns a person is, the harder it is to scare them and do something above and beyond and original.”
“If players say ‘I haven’t played a game this scary in a while,’ that would make me the happiest.”
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Discussion about the games market in Brazil took place at Connepi and Universo IF
SAN LUIS – The capital of Maranhão received, 3-6 of November, two events in science and technology: Connepi 2014 (Congresso Norte Nordeste de Pesquisa e Inovação) and the first edition of Universo IF, space idealized by the Federal Institute of Maranhão (IFMA), with research presentations, workshops, exhibitions, lectures, encouraging the startup culture, games and contest promotion ideas.
Universe IF was split between Startup Planet, Planet Play, and the Planet Link. The Startup award for the best business ideas in technology. Students and federal institutes nationwide servers registered their projects in “Challenge of Ideas”. The purpose of the competition is to encourage the culture of startup (term used to talk about businesses that are starting their activities) in the federal system.
“Any one of you can succeed in being a superstar in the field of video games,” said the American businessman David Gershik this Thursday (5) to an audience composed mostly of young students in Federal Institutes of Education, science and Technology. Renowned entrepreneur in the gaming industry, Gershik presented the lecture “Brazil, an intense dream: The business of games on-largest economy in Latin America,” on stage at the Planet Startup, one of the spaces for the activities of the Universo IF.
Soon after the lecture, there was a panel that broadened the debate on the gaming market of Brazil. Besides David Gershik, two other names in the business of games participated in the debate Moacyr Alves and Jorge Proenca. Professor Virginia Freire, Advisor of International Relations of IFMA was the mediator of the panel. Among the issues highlighted in the debate were: prejudice against those who work with games, educational ways that games can take and the decentralization of the game development process in the country.
Read more (in portuguese):
Hoof Puff, The Northeastern Worldeater
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