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Hyper Light Drifter

Developer Covers Key Aspects

Kickstarter success story Hyper Light Drifter is well on its way to release later this year, but many parts of it remain mysterious. Lead designer at Heart Machine Alex Preston posted on the PlayStation Blog today about three key features that make up Hyper Light Drifter.

Preston talked about how he and his team are building fast paced combat that requires skill, but isn’t unfair. Controls, visuals, and audio has all been built around making the combat feel “responsive and satisfying each time you lop an enemy in half, blow something up, or wipe out entire packs of ravenous creatures.”

He also spoke about creating intelligent scenarios involving enemy encounters that don’t treat them like “cannon fodder.” This will involve enemies dodging your attacks, deflecting them, or commanding weaker enemies to try and gain an advantage.

In terms of storytelling, Preston said that they’re tired of seeing endless blocks of text, and want to keep user-interfacing to a minimum, since the focus should be on Hyper Light Drifters world. Dialogue and quests will be presented in storyboard sequences without requiring text or voice overs. 

The third aspect he talked about is Hyper Light Drifter’s atmosphere. Preston said that they’re focusing on the excitement of discovery to create a compelling world for the player. He also said that players will notice that something is off whenever they venture to a new area.

“The visuals will be the other major factor in forging the tone and intention of the spaces,” Preston wrote “Each environment uses a striking and specific palette to highlight landmarks, and they’re littered with touches like reactive wildlife and intricate architecture. The world is long past its era of great carnage, but remnants are everywhere: craters from battles fought, wreckage from hulking machines grown­over, bones from mammoth creatures, tubes of rotting experiments in ancient labs.”

Hyper Light Drifter received $645,158 in funding (shattering its $27,000 goal) from over 24,000 backers on October 12, 2013. It’s planned to release on PC, Mac, Linux, PlayStation 4, PS Vita, Wii U, and Ouya in mid-2014, with a beta occurring two months prior for backers.

[Source: PlayStation Blog]

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