Choose Your Own Adventure Walking Dead VR Game Arrives On Headsets Early 2020
Check out the first trailer for this 15+ hour survival-horror experience set in New Orleans.
Today Skybound Interactive released the first official cinematic trailer for The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners, a survival-horror RPG VR game set within the Walking Dead universe. Taking place on the flooded streets of post-apocalypse New Orleans, players will have the ability to fight, craft, and navigate a large open environment with over 15 hours of content to explore.
“It’s been three years since the outbreak,” states an official release. “The once-great city of New Orleans is now flooded and surrounded by a herd of walkers, making escape near-impossible. The city is divided into districts accessible only by skiff and controlled by a community known as ‘The Tower.’”
“With dwindling supplies, the Tower’s grip on the city is threatened when a brutal group called the Reclaimed rises against them. Anyone not in a faction must fend for themselves…few survive. Rumors suggest that a Cold Warera bunker exists, loaded with years’ worth of food, medical supplies, and weapons. A race to find this hidden ‘Reserve’ begins, and with it, a bloody battle for power.”
Players can battle against hordes of undead “walkers” using an assortment of melee weapons, including knives, axes, and broken bottles — as well as shotguns, crossbows, and a variety of other craftable zombie-killing utensils. Most interesting, however, is the game’s physics-based combat system. In reality, people can’t effortlessly slice through entire human bodies with little-to-no resistance. In Saints & Sinners, the same rules apply.
Let’s say you pick up a knife and stab a walker in the head with every ounce of strength you have in your body. That knife is now lodged inside your unfortunate undead victim. In order to remove it, you’ll have to hold the body down with your other arm while you yank out your weapon with the other; every time the player uses a melee weapon, they risk losing it. This forces the player to approach their battles with a little more strategy if they wish to survive. In terms of difficulty, the game will include the standard experience, as well as a perma-death option which forces the player to restart their campaign from the ground up if they are killed.
Along with a refreshingly-realistic combat system, Saints & Sinners takes a page out of Telltale’s The Walking Dead by employing a choose your own adventure-style dialogue mechanic that allows players to make decisions that will affect their relationships with non-playable characters as well as the overall experience. Play as a heroic knight with a soft spot for helping the weak, join a warring faction and start a beef with another gang, or play them against each other and watch as their empires crumble. You can even convince others to take a bullet for you because you’re just that swell! Just remember that everything you do has a consequence within the game.
“We experimented with different takes on the art style, and [since] there are a lot of zombie games out there [The Walking Dead Telltale series, Days Gone, Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare, to name a few], we wanted to make sure we had an interesting style that, when we looked at a screenshot, we could say, ‘this is our game,’” said art director Jake Geiger in reference to Saints & Sinners, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“We start out with a blue sky approach to a mission or a level that we’re putting together, so we’ll have all the writers in a room and we’ll brainstorm ideas. From there it goes over to design; they’ll make paper maps and come up with rough geometry for the game. Once we’ve reached that stage and they’ve found what makes that stage fun, art will do a pass and work closely with design to reshape it architecturally and make it feel like it was a real building. Then it’s about making it pretty.”
The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners launches on January 23rd, 2020. No word yet on which platforms will be receiving support, but it should be noted that demos of the title were conducted using Oculus Rift headsets. Based on the visual quality and the large amount of content, it’s more than likely the title will be available exclusively on PC VR headsets.
Feature Image Credit: Skydance Interactive