Paradox Interactive announced late Thursday that it will publish a long-awaited sequel to the cult-favorite PC game, 2004’s Vampire: the Masquerade – Bloodlines. game has several Seattle connections. As you can see in the trailer, it’s set in a dark reflection of Seattle, where an ancient clan of vampires — the real rulers of the city — fight a hidden cold war for power and dominance. It’s also developed by Seattle-based studio . Formed in 2015 as Builder Box Games, by veterans of the closed Zombie Studios, Hardsuit’s previous project was the cyberpunk FPS . It recently after 7 years, citing its involvement with “some very interesting projects that require the full focus of the development teams and leadership,” and now we know why. The original Bloodlines is a cult classic, famous for its plot twists, subtle details, legitimately meaningful choices, and for being a game that could be completed in many different ways depending on the player’s decisions, powers, and customized attributes. The original writer is confirmed to be coming back for Bloodlines 2. As in the original Bloodlines, the player enters the game as a freshly-made vampire, whose creation was an active attempt at insurrection. Making a new vampire is supposed to be a big deal, and requires permission from the elders before it’s allowed. Therefore, the fact that you exist is an act of rebellion against the vampires who rule Seattle. As a direct result, the vampire clans in the city go to war against one another, forcing you to choose your allegiances carefully if you want to survive. (Paradox Interactive Photo) Bloodlines 2 is a choice-driven role-playing PC game, planned to launch in 2020. You’ll be able to choose from a large number of supernatural powers, based around the clan of vampires you opt to join at the start of the game. In Vampire, as well as the original Bloodlines, you can opt for the classic suite of abilities like shapeshifting, unnatural durability, and superhuman speed, as well as setting-specific disciplines like paranormal senses, blood magic, and impersonating others. However, you have to balance your powers’ use against not only your current supply of blood, but the risk of breaking the titular Masquerade. Vampire society depends on staying hidden, with the majority of humans led to believe that vampires are just myths. If you screw up and reveal your existence to normal people, all hell will come down on you and everyone around you. Bloodlines 2 is set in the World of Darkness, a Gothic monster-ridden reflection of the real world, which is the setting for a series of horror tabletop role-playing games by Atlanta’s White Wolf Publishing. Paradox Interactive acquired White Wolf from its previous owners, CCP Games, in 2015, which in turn spurred a series of rumors about the possibility of the franchise resurfacing in some way. (Another World of Darkness property, Werewolf: The Apocalypse, has a at the French studio Cyanide.) Vampire: The Masquerade itself, the first game in the line, recently celebrated its 20th birthday with a of the core rulebook. You heard right, let us be the first to welcome you back to the World of Darkness — Hardsuit Labs (@HardsuitLabs) The original Bloodlines came out in 2004, developed by Troika Games, a studio of veterans of the first two Fallout games at Interplay, and published by Activision. Following a troubling three-year development period, Bloodlines was eventually sent to store shelves in an unfinished state, and worse, into a crowded release window that put it directly up against big games such as Half-Life 2, Halo 2, and Metal Gear Solid 3. Its subsequent sales failure ended up forcing Troika to shut down, but the game rapidly acquired a cult following, as well as several fan-driven that try to finish what the original developers had started. Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 is currently available for pre-order on Steam, Epic, GOG, and Paradox’s digital storefront for US$59.99. An enhanced edition with a season pass for post-release story content, is available for $89.99.
(Nintendo Photo) Nintendo made a surprise announcement Wednesday morning at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, unveiling a crossover between one of its tentpole franchises and a recent independent hit that debuted last year on the Switch. Cadence of Hyrule is a mash-up between The Legend of Zelda and 2015’s , which sees Necrodancer‘s heroine Cadence unexpectedly visiting the world of Hyrule. Once there, she teams up with Link and Princess Zelda for an adventure. Cadence, which debuts this spring for the Switch, is developed by Necrodancer‘s original studio, the Vancouver, B.C.-based Brace Yourself Games, with a soundtrack by , the Seattle-based musician who composed music for the original Necrodancer, Super Meat Boy, and The Binding of Isaac. Cadence‘s music will feature remixes of classic music from the Zelda series. As with Necrodancer, Cadence of Hyrule is a 2D dungeon crawler, with the additional mechanic that you can only move or attack if you do so while staying on beat with the game’s soundtrack. If you manage to keep your character’s action in time with the music, you receive a multiplier that boosts your score; if you miss a beat, you may end up leaving yourself vulnerable to enemies’ attacks. The effect is to encourage you to play the game like it’s an instrument, staying in tune and constantly moving. Over the course of the last few years, Crypt of the Necrodancer has been ported from its PC debut to every system under the sun, and made its this past February, in a new edition that featured a brand new playable character. It also features a prequel expansion, Amplified, which expands its character roster and adds a new zone. Necrodancer won the for Best Audio in 2016. Keep the beat and keep Hyrule from meeting certain doom when Cadence of Hyrule – Crypt of the NecroDancer Featuring the Legend of from comes to this spring! — Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) The debut of Cadence of Hyrule came at the end of a scheduled “ where Nintendo’s Kirk Scott and Katie Casper presented a half-hour pre-taped showcase of upcoming independent games for the Nintendo Switch. Other announcements from this morning’s Nindies show include: Stranger Things 3: The Game, a 2-player co-op adventure game developed in Texas by, scheduled to release on July 4, the same day as season 3 debut of Netflix’s Stranger Things. The game is promised to let you “delve deeper into” the strange events of the show’s third season. a surprisingly faithful sequel to Sunsoft’s NES classic, is available for purchase on Switch today. Katana Zero, a “neo-noir” action platformer that challenges players to take on the role of a deadly but fragile assassin, will be out for the Switch on April 18. The Red Lantern, the debut project from the California studio Timberline, where the player (voiced by Ashly Burch) goes to Alaska to compete in the dog-sledding race, but ends up being challenged to survive a trip across the wilderness. It’s planned to come out on Switch at some point in 2019. Rad, by cult-favorite developer Double Fine Productions, is an action game set in a 1980s vision of post-nuclear destruction, with a hero that fights mutants by turning into animal-human hybrids. It’s planned to be out this summer. Devolver Digital, famous for publishing weird independent games, is bringing Victor “” Agren’s stylish, violent shoot-’em-up My Friend Pedro to the Switch in June. , by Chance Agency, is an “emotional survival game” about being the last human cab driver in an automation-driven city in California. You must manage your passengers’ reviews, keep your emotions in check, and stay employed while searching for your best friend. It’s scheduled for this summer. The Polish-developed survival horror game is coming to the Switch in May. Unusual for the larger games industry, a lot of these “Nindies” are scheduled to come out at some point in the summer, which is traditionally a dry spell for video game releases. At least on the Switch, it looks like there won’t be much of a games drought in 2019.
Vancouver, B.C.-based indie game developer Red Hook Studios announced on Tuesday that it has begun work on Darkest Dungeon 2, a sequel to the hit 2016 dungeon crawler. The announcement comes on the third anniversary of the original DD‘s exit from Steam Early Access. Most of what’s known right now about DD2 comes from with two of Red Hook’s developers. The new game is being made by a significantly larger team, up to 14 from the five core creators who worked on the original DD, and will feature an updated version of the original’s gameplay. Are you courageous enough tot carry the Flame? We're working on a sequel to Darkest Dungeon! — Darkest Dungeon (@DarkestDungeon) Darkest Dungeon was initially funded via Kickstarter in 2014, and entered Steam’s Early Access program in 2015. The player takes the role of an adventurer who discovers that she has inherited an estate from a dead relative. Upon arrival, she finds that the extensive tunnels below the manor building contain portals that have released an untold number of evil creatures into the world, and she must recruit a party to clean the place out. Unlike a lot of games with a similar premise, Darkest Dungeon draws heavily upon themes and mechanics from horror, particularly H.P. Lovecraft’s . The player has to watch out for character stress levels and mental health, in addition to terrible monsters. You don’t just have to keep your adventurers alive, but also just sane and human enough to function, and you’re almost guaranteed to lose a few of them to injury, trauma, or worse. Darkest Dungeon quickly became a bestseller on Steam, and “graduated” from Early Access 11 months later, with subsequent ports to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita. It received two DLC expansions, The Crimson Court and The Colour of Madness, in 2017 and 2018.