Deathloop Dev Delves Into the Unique Artstyle, Time Loop Mechanics, and Being a Next-Gen Title
Deathloop Game Director Dinga Bakaba and Art Director Sebastien Mitton recent interview delves into mechanics, artstyle, and next-gen features.
Deathloop Game Director Dinga Bakaba and Art Director Sebastien Mitton recently spoke in a new interview about the upcoming first person action game. He details the art style and its aspirations, how the time loop mechanic works, and what it means to be a next-gen title coming to PS5.
While the title shares plenty of similarities with the rogue-like genre (random, procedurally generated map designs) there are some key differences as outlined by Mitton. “You are piecing together what happened on the island, who you are, and what you are doing here and how you can escape.
“The way it’s a bit different from a roguelike is, imagine that I find an important clue, and I die just after that. Progress is still made. You might lose the gun that you found, but the story has moved forward. [The Protagonist] Colt now knows something and the player both knows something important and they need to act on this thing.”
He then elaborates on how it preserves the mystery of the island because you don’t always start in the same place, aren’t always doing the same thing, and you don’t have the same goals. However, players aren’t beholden to the timeloop mechanic either. If they want to play slowly and deliberately the game will not punish them for it.
As for coming to the PS5, Mitton notes all the natural improvements that come with working on a new system such as higher resolution, higher frame rate, HDR, ray tracing, higher fidelity, etc. He then elaborates on the DualSense controller and what that will add to the game: “It’s got a lot of nice features with the haptics feedback, the active triggers. We are a first person game. We really value immersion a lot in our games,” he said. “Really feel the weapons in your hand, its reaction, how it reloads, how it reacts to reloading, etc… I think that players will enjoy those functionalities.”
The art of Deathloop was heavily inspired by the work of artist Saul Bass, responsible for famous posters and title sequences for films like Vertigo, The Shining, and more. When the decision was made to have the game take place during the 60s, Bass’s aesthetics were chosen to convey that unique contrast and clash, which highlights the setting even more. Mitton also talks about Deathloop‘s power set, which looks reminiscent of Arkane’s past work on Dishonored, and how they wanted something half realistic and half comic book like.
Deathloop is a first-person action game set in Blackreef, an island cut off from the rest of the world and set during a time of chaos. The game is a brand new IP from Arkane Studios and Bethesda Softworks with development done by Arkane Lyon (based in the French city of Lyon), the developers who previously worked on Dishonored.
Deathloop was revealed through a cinematic trailer that introduced its two main characters, Colt and Julianna. Both are assassins and rivals in business and both are stuck in a time loop, repeating the same days each time they bite the dust. Colt wishes to break free, however Julianna wants to keep the time loop in place. It’ll be interesting to learn more about Colt and Julianna and see how their difference in opinions concerning the timeloop will affect the story of Deathloop.
It features an intricate story and levels with “Arkane gameplay,” meaning multiple solutions in order to traverse a level and dispatch enemies. Besides the time loop, the cinematic trailer shows both characters using multiple supernatural abilities, hinting at the different gameplay possibilities.
The premise of Deathloop is very unique and really does lend itself to some interesting and varied gameplay. The weapons and equipment look great as well and really takes advantage of the time manipulation aspect that defines the plot. A pleasant surprise as well is that both main characters are black, which is a rarity in a video game.
If you want to learn more about other games that star or center black characters, be sure to check out my editorial.