Primal Carnage: Genesis
There really aren’t enough games about dinosaurs. Primal Carnage: Genesis aims to fix that, serving as a prequel to Lukewarm Media’s earlier multiplayer shooter Primal Carnage. This one is a single-player affair with a narrative and oodles more dinosaurs to survive.
We’re actually a little bit unsure about this one; although it was announced by Sony as part of one of its PS4 indie blow outs, the project has since gone silent, with official websites missing. We saw a little extra footage a month after reveal, but that’s been pretty much it. We might give Sony a poke and see if we can summon an update, although the active Twitter account leaves us hopeful.
Fans have been hoping for a new Unreal Tournament game for ages, and the occasion of a whole new engine is the perfect excuse to resurrect this venerable and respected arena shooter series. But rather than knuckle down and produce the expected sequel, Epic has chosen to shake things up for its second major UE4 project. The free shooter will be built in collaboration with the UE development community, with an emphasis on modding and openness.
This is an exciting new approach from Epic and one that is indicative of the changes sweeping the industry. Since the Unreal Engine is such a bastion of modern development, it’s comforting to see Epic embracing the new rather than grimly sticking it out. Unfortunately we haven’t seen a blessed thing from the project yet, so the image above, taken from an earlier release, is not representative of how the game will look.
Dead Island 2
There’s been a bit of – forgive me – ludonarrative dissonance in the Dead Island series to date. The trailers for the original game and for unnumbered sequel Riptide seemed to position it as a serious, emotional and atmospheric exploration of the horrors of a zombie outbreak, and the weary, frightened survivors the player meets gelled with this interpretation. On the other hand, the gameplay itself is frankly ludicrous – the best move is a jumping kick, you craft ridiculous weapons, and the whole concept of first-person melee, even when executed as well as can be expected, is laughable at best.
There’s nothing wrong with the utter nonsense that is Dead Island, and it’s great to see that publisher Deep Silver and developer Yager (best known for the very serious Spec Ops: The Line, but having apparently had a change of heart) are playing up to a sense of the ridiculous in the first trailer, which you can and should watch above.
D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die
An Xbox One exclusive from Deadly Premonition creator Hidetaka Suheiro (better know as Swery), D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die is an episodic murder mystery utilising Kinect voice and motion controls. Players take on the role of a detective, and travel in time trying to solve and prevent his wife’s murder. Presented in a distinct style, it looks just about as mad as you’d expect from Swery.
It’s not clear if D4 is the long-awaited Deadly Premonition spiritual successor Swery has mentioned a couple of times; we’ve not heard that Tomio Kanazawa is on board, and the D4 announcement with trailer just six months after the idea was last mentioned seems a little too quick off the mark.
If Abzû puts you in mind of Journey, there’s a good reason for it – it’s the first game from Giant Squid, a studio founded by Matt Nava, the art director on both Journey and Flower. It’s not just the visuals; Austin Wintory is behind the score.
There’s very little information about the 505-published title as yet, but the name comes from two ancient words meaning “ocean” and “to know”, with Giant Squid saying the underwater exploration game will tap into “a deep, innate story that we all carry in our collective subconscious”. It’s probably going to be drop dead gorgeous.
Another Xbox One exclusive, Scalebound is a new action game from Platinum Games, the developer of Bayonetta. Possibly borrowing a little from the Drakengard series, Scalebound has players teaming up with dragons for on-foot and aerial combat sequences.
That’s everything we know so far, but Platinum’s reputation precedes it and we look forward to seeing how its imagination is unlocked by the power and ease of use of UE4.