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Hellblade II's Potential Is Sky-High as a First-Party AAA Xbox Title

Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice was the achievement of a AAA-like experience from Ninja Theory. Senua's Saga: Hellblade II is poised to far surpass it.

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gangsta_red440d ago (Edited 440d ago )

You mean this game has the potential to be a triple A franchise? Who would have thought.

Personally, I didn't like the first one, the presentation and graphics were stunning but the gameplay was boring.

Let's hope there's a lot more to do than just looking for glyphs and such

darthv72440d ago

With a bigger budget, they can make the game they wanted to make initially.

bouzebbal439d ago

Sky high I won't call it that.. Apart from dmc for me none of their games was a massive hit.. Graphics they are good at, I'm sure this game will deliver on this.

rdgneoz3439d ago

A bigger budget affects game length, how big and detailed the world is, graphics, audio, and fps. The basics like movement, combat, and such shouldn't really change really as they're the foundation for the game. No matter the budget, you need a good foundation to get people playing your game. Outer Worlds is short, but has a good foundation which is why people like it. Same with many indie games that are short but fun, or old school graphics with addicting gameplay.

Bronxs15439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

I really enjoyed enslaved from them. More than the dmc game. Seeing titles like bayonetta and vanquish get remakes. I’d love to see a enslaved remake and a heavenly sword while their at it lol

Wasabi440d ago

@Gangsta

I think that Ninja Theory will position this game as Xbox's rival to Sony's God of War reboot.

Angry main protagonist - Check
Norse Mythology - Check
Intricate next gen graphics engine - Check
Atreus replaced by voices in head - Check
Troll Type Demon seen coming out of rock - Check
Red Striped Body paint - Check

Goddess of War.

Wasabi440d ago (Edited 440d ago )

@Gangsta

Interestingly The article is written by Nate Nadja (Shinobi on Twitter and Resetera), owner of the website Shinobi Speaks and communications manager for Wushu Studios. Wushu is a liverpool based studio made up of ex devs that previously worked on DriveClub and Motorstorm on the PlayStation platform as well as some Codemasters titles. They are rumored to be developing a title for PS5.

thatguyhayat439d ago

Wasabi

Thats not even close. Im guessing you didnt play the first one

439d ago
Wasabi439d ago

As user Spicyram clearly does not know how to use the REPLY button, I'd like to share the message I just received via PM so that we may discuss his comment further

***"You think Hellblade is Microsoft's answer to God of war? Wow, you finally get one decent exclusive, now you're saying this Microsoft's answer to God of war? There is no way in shit Hellblade is comparable to God of war's quality. Sorry but that's just a fact. How many Game of the year awards did Hellblade get? Average score? Ninja theory is a good studio, but you fanatics are hyping this game WAY too much already, based off ONE trailer . Sorry, dream on You delusional xbox fanchild"***

Wasabi439d ago

@thatguy

I played the first one, if you disagree with my pointing out the similarities between GoW and how Hellblade II MAY be positioned with a bigger budget and larger ambition thats fine, it's just my personal opinion based on my thoughts - I don't expect everyone to agree with me, if we all agreed on everything the world would be a pretty boring place, I'm not sure how my comment is "not even close" as neither of us know how final game will turn out.

@Echo

Good point mate, my comment is not about rivalry between two plastic boxes it's more a commentary on the direction NT may take the series with a bigger team and better resourcing.

rainslacker439d ago

I'm OK with that so long as they keep the themes of the character and game in tact. The first one was special because of what they actually achieved with trying to represent mental illness. Turning that into an experience, instead of just a character with mental illness, is not something that's easy to achieve.

If it's just a hack and slash with a shallow story, then I may still like it as it's own thing, but I feel it would lose that something special which really set it apart on release.

Wasabi439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@rainslacker

***"I'm OK with that so long as they keep the themes of the character and game in tact. The first one was special because of what they actually achieved with trying to represent mental illness. Turning that into an experience, instead of just a character with mental illness, is not something that's easy to achieve.

If it's just a hack and slash with a shallow story, then I may still like it as it's own thing, but I feel it would lose that something special which really set it apart on release."***

That is exactly how I feel rain, from the point of view of NT and MS, I'm sure they will be looking at the success of GoW and hearing the criticism regarding high quality first party experiences on the Xbox platform and it would surprise me if similarities have not already been drawn.

The mythology, character and setting area all a natural fit for a GoW style reboot. I agree that the challenge would be bringing this to life without compromising what made the first game special, but having played the original I think that capturing the same feeling as the first game in a sequel would be quite a challenge anyway, that story has already been told. In my personal opinion, a more ambitious game that includes elements from the original but with a bigger scope and more intricate combat systems is the obvious way to go,

CaptainHenry916439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

"I think that Ninja Theory will position this game as Xbox's rival to Sony's God of War reboot."

I stopped reading right there 😂😁

sinspirit439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@Wasabi

Always trying to compare and not distinguish games apart from each other is why all these gaming related sites are ruined. Just like the Haze vs Halo thing. Except Hellblade is a great game. Imagine if people still compared KillZone to Halo. How much of a waste of time that would be for two great games that are merely just part of the same genre. I wouldn't compare Forza Horizon to Gran Turismo Sport. Would I? But, they're similar right? Till you actually play them, which is the point of gaming.

Trust me. The only historical evidence that would have Hellblade with a higher budget than God of War is from Microsoft's insane focus on marketing campaigns and combining the marketing costs into the games budget(which is normal, but remember when they advertised they spent $1 billion on games back in the day and half of it was just for advertisement).

You can have any opinion you want. But, it's different to make real world theories and think we can't argue why that wouldn't be the case. Just because Microsoft owns XBox doesn't magically make their budgets far higher than Sony or Nintendo. Otherwise, they'd have been on top of the industry over a decade ago. The budgets for their games have been no different than competitors. Only seemingly more wasteful based on the review scores and development time spent. I really do hope MS has had an epiphany on game development and does push great games that are made the way the studios want to make them. We can only wait and see. And, I intend to wait till they release. No trailers, demos, or promises will sell me.

TK-66439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

First off, this idea that Hellblade is an answer to God of War 4 is dumb. Secondly, Hellblade released before God of War 4 did, so this idea that God of War 4 did thsse things before Hellblade isnt accurate.

Following your logic we'd have to call God of War Sonys answer to lollipop chainsaw because of the decapitated talking head hanging from the waist.

Wasabi439d ago

@sinspirit

***"Always trying to compare and not distinguish games apart from each other is why all these gaming related sites are ruined"***

Comparisons are always going to be drawn between similar games, in this case over the shoulder third person story driven action/adventure games. The similarities I highlighted in my initial post represent obvious conclusions that can be drawn within the setting, character, enemies, aesthetic of the games - I don't care if you agree - that's your problem not mine.

***"I wouldn't compare Forza Horizon to Gran Turismo Sport"***

No, but you would compare Forza Motorsport to Gran Turismo as digital foundry have done in the past,

https://www.youtube.com/wat...

why you would select a less than obvious example is beyond me, we are not comparing HB1 to GoW my comments refer specifically to HB2, comparisons that the author of the article agrees with considering the new scope of backing made possible by Microsoft;

"With the full support of Microsoft’s financial and logistical resources now, Ninja Theory is free to go to town, and that presents a tantalizing prospect. What can a team that delivered Hellblade do with a much higher budget? My immediate presumption would be an expansion of scope. Wider environments, a full team of combat designers to broaden gameplay systems, a larger narrative with multiple areas in-game, and a lengthier campaign are just the tip of the iceberg of what’s possible"

***"he only historical evidence that would have Hellblade with a higher budget than God of War is from Microsoft's insane focus on marketing campaigns and combining the marketing costs into the games budget(which is normal, but remember when they advertised they spent $1 billion on games back in the day and half of it was just for advertisement)"***

I mean, this just comes off as you having an issue with Microsoft and Xbox in general so other than to say this is not the topic of discussion I won't be addressing this further.

***"You can have any opinion you want. But, it's different to make real world theories and think we can't argue why that wouldn't be the case"***

Yes I can, I don't care if my opinion offends you or if you or anyone else disagree with what I write. Nothing I have said has been presented as fact, nor could anything I have written be viewed as inflammatory or offensive beyond being hard to swallow for users with delicate sensibilities. No one challenged your ability to debate or disagree, nor have I challenged someone's personal opinion beyond pointing out flaws and inconsistencies in arguments presented. Again, the author of the article agrees with my thoughts on scope and scale for the game as summarized here:

"These are exciting times ahead. Ninja Theory is but one of several first-party Xbox studios known for their narrative prowess. One thing is certain: Microsoft will no doubt aim for Hellblade to become a high caliber story-driven franchise within Xbox Game Studios, and Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II is one of the first hats thrown into the ring"

***"I really do hope MS has had an epiphany on game development and does push great games that are made the way the studios want to make them. We can only wait and see"***

On this it seems we can agree.

Wasabi439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@TK-66

***"First off, this idea that Hellblade is an answer to God of War 4 is dumb. Secondly, Hellblade released before God of War 4 did, so this idea that God of War 4 did thsse things before Hellblade isnt accurate"***

No one is comparing the original Hellblade to God of War, the discussion is focussed on the additional scope afforded to NT by becoming part of Xbox Game Studios and receiving financial backing from Microsoft, the author of the article stated exactly the same thing.

The problem seems not to be the comparison drawn by the style of game Hellblade 2 may become with additional funding from Microsoft, but the fact that I had the audacity to point out similarities between the character, setting, enemies and potential style of game and draw a comparison with the holy grail of first party PlayStation games, God of War.

439d ago
sinspirit439d ago

@Wasabi

That's not what I said though.The comparison between regular Forza and GT Sport is because they ARE directly comparable. However, Horizon plays entirely different than the regular more sim focused racers. Otherwise, why would we have both Forza and Horizon? Hellblade and God of War don't play the same. They appear the same because of the camera angle and the use of melee combat. God of War is faster paced and more varied in its combat and use of magic and abilities. I am not saying that this means it is better necessarily. I'm not comparing what is and isn't better. I'm saying it IS different by a wide margin. Jumping the gun in comparing the two only fuels an unnecessary argument and just wastes time. Lets compare soccer and football too.

Wasabi439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@Sinspirit

You're missing my point buddy, I'll try to explain a little better

***"The comparison between regular Forza and GT Sport is because they ARE directly comparable"***

i agree, They are comparable because they are similar in scope and mechanics, many tracks, many cars, high production values set on the same / similar circuits with the same style of racing.

***"However, Horizon plays entirely different than the regular more sim focused racers. Otherwise, why would we have both Forza and Horizon? Hellblade and God of War don't play the same."***

I agree, Forza Horizon (GoW or the other way around) plays differently than GT (Hellblade or the other way around) - This is the same as as the ORIGINAL HELLBLADE vs GoW, both over the shoulder third person action adventure games, both completely different in their scope and although they share similar mechanics and camera perspective they are quite different games. One is a large scale semi open world adventure, the other a more intimate tale set within more linear confines. I agree with this and everything else you mentioned, but are am not talking about the first Hellblade - I am talking about the potential of it's sequel.

Now my point, taking into account my previous comments and the comments of Nate Nadja in the article quoted in my many, many responses to this already.

Considering that many of the constraints and design choices of the original Hellblade were due to limitations of money and resources (we know this because the Studio have said so themselves on numerous occasions the videos can be found on YouTube) and not because of scope of imagination or intention. What kind of game do you think they may possibly come up with when you exponentially increase the size of world, combat systems, character progression, graphical fidelity and production values featured in a game about a reluctant, angry, revenge seeking warrior on a mission of love set within norse mythology featuring large trolls a very prominent evil main protagonist, body paint and a talking severed head attached to the person.

This one

https://www.reddit.com/r/he...

leejohnson222439d ago

I can't catch my breath, it's a great game hellblade but it hardly has the following or established lore of God of war. Come on now, some one having a few early bucks fizz?

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xX-oldboy-Xx439d ago

gangsta - I 100% agree, NT has a history of creating new ips - I think they would have better to do that.

Although they may change HB2 gameplay completely and make it more action orientated and deeper puzzles.

The Wood439d ago

Yep. I definitely see a franchise opportunity. Let's see how the team and ip are managed

gangsta_red439d ago

They seem to be in good hands with more money to make and do what they want.

Definitely a step up from Kickstarter and doing freelance work to make one game.

Antifan439d ago

Just a curious thought, but Hellblades genre and gameplay style doesn't fit the taste of Xbox fans. I fear this game will die on Xbox.

gangsta_red439d ago

It barely was a success for PS fans, but when it went multiplatform it sold a lot better. If it would have stayed on PS it would have died definitely.

No reason to fear anything, i think Xbox fans will enjoy the game.

The Wood439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

Not sure about that red. . Other genres don't really sell well on xbox. Hiding numbers behind game pass has been their way since they chose to stop reporting sales and swerve to other metrics. You should read some of the comments made by xbox fans when hellblade was released. Also money/funding isn't some kinda guarantee. . Just look at the games Microsoft has released this gen. . . I'm sure most of them had more money than the kickstarter project and still ended up being sub par or not as acclaimed as hell blade

gangsta_red439d ago

@the wood

I think it's about time to let go of the "Xbox fans won't play" card every time a Sony IP or Sony exclusive jumps ship to Xbox. It kind of reeks of desperation and definitely a pinch of the old blood pressure inducing spice.

I keep hearing how Sony fans are concerned with Xbox having more variety in it's games, but when it happens then that concern turns to worry about sales. Too much concern and worrying that it's hard to enjoy just the games that are coming out or releasing soon if you ask me.

I wouldn't stress about it honestly. Ninja Theory is now a first party since they were about to close their doors due thier game not selling well enough only on PlayStation that they had no choice but to make it multiplatform and then be bought out by MS in order to keep food on the table.

The Wood439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

Lol. The numbers don't lie.

You've got one bit the wrong way around. Microsoft does need variety. . They also need support. Microsoft won't put money into sequels that may not sell and its why they were so limited for so long. It's why some feel their sp games output, which don't generate long time revenue, was underwhelming.

These things were uttered long before any game jumped ship so you should revise that argument as there's over a decade of evidence right here on this site as proof.

When people including xbox truth tellers critique Microsoft's crap performance and ways it shouldn't be taken as something that's simple to fix like ticking a box. It's like I hear many of you guys say. .'well you guys said ms didn't have enough studios so you can't say that now' like somehow that's all it takes to compete and their macro problems are fixed. . . . Nah. . . The management of these teams is just as important. Fast car with a weak driver won't usually beat a slower car with a great driver. Xbox has the better hardware yet Sony has the better looking 'games' Microsoft has more money yet Sony deliver more quality games.

Microsoft seem like they're finally moving in the right direction but until quality games are released on a more consistent basis it's all just talk like it has been ALL this generation.

You can't expect people to give credit for Microsoft turning up. They need to produce not posture. When they do, their mindshare and reputation will increase and credit will have to be given. Forget those who will never give credit. . There's plenty of level headed members on here that will give praise when it's due but just know you'll always hear members question and banter on Microsoft until they actually compete. This gen was a flop and many of you guys found any reason to defend, deflect and deny what the opposition were saying. Honestly, look where that got ya. . . .

A father shouldn't take credit for looking after his kids. . . . . . . Because he's meant to do that by default.

CaptainHenry916439d ago

You're right. The game was cheap as well. I think they sold it for $30 bucks at launch which helped in sales. The sequel will be $60

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SpaceRanger440d ago

That’s a lot of talk based on one trailer. The devs will obviously put their heart into it like their last game, but that is only a portion of what makes games good. Hopefully they deliver next gen without too much meddling from the higher ups. We all know how that turned out last gen...

darthv72440d ago

Well... there really wasnt much meddling this gen because there werent that many AAA first party releases. If you want to consider the cancelation of scalebound as meddling then so be it but that was more to do with mismanagement of funds and time on the part of PG... not MS meddling with the project.

MS has been pretty much hands off this gen and letting the devs make what they want. What makes you think that will suddenly change next gen?

MrVux000439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

Yes lets completely ignore what happened to Lionhead,Press Play,Rare, Ensemble Studios or how they influanced the Xbox giant game series such as Fable,Halo and Gears of War...so much for ''no meddling''.

I was especially pissed of how they treated Ensemle Studios back in 2008, since i was a huge fan of that studio.

And no, Sony is not jail-free from the same things, tho certainly not on the same level as Microsoft .

darthv72439d ago

@Vux... studios closing is not the same as meddling with the games in development. Studios close for various reasons. Plus i seem to recall I said "this gen" which means Rare was able to make the game they wanted to (they pitched way back on the 360 before they were tasked with making Avatars) because Ms took a hands off approach to things this gen.

New people in charge means new changes. Some for the better and some not so much but it has been more hands off than their previous gens.

Obscure_Observer439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@MrVux000

"And no, Sony is not jail-free from the same things, tho certainly not on the same level as Microsoft ."

Hmm... Correct me if I wrong. Wasn´t Yoshida the one who fired hundreds at Santa Monica and had their open world sci-fi game canceled?

Wasn´t the same Yoshida the one talking big about support VR just a few weeks ago, and yet, retributed both Evolution and Guerrilla Cambridge dedication and passion to VR with an Axe?

Now tell me, which one of their first party studios you think will jump for joy if tasked with a VR game project?

extermin8or439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@obscure_observer it is very well known in the industry that sony is incredibly hands off when it comes to game development. Providing feedback and access to their expert internal coding team to help with technical difficulties or optimisation (ICE) and other feedback when the devs present and update sony on development progress. Santa Monica's game was cancelled because it was seen to not be working at all in terms of story and direction etc. They had restarted it several times and it just wasn't happening. They subsequently laid off staff because it's a business and they were now not in full development. Back to the drawing board, early stages of development where much smaller focused teams are all that is needed. It's common when a game releases for alot of staff to move on- this waa abit like that. They felt guerilla cambridge would be best served working on something else so took them off RIGs and VR? There are plenty of other studios working on those, circumstances change.

London Studios would jump for joy- oh they already did provising "the heist" in VR worlds and more recently the full game Blood and Truth and are working on its sequel atm.

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HighPlayer28439d ago

Wow you Sony fans really live in the past and think Microsoft is the same as they were when they looked at Xbox as nothing but a side project and liability to the company. News flash Sony fans this is not the same Microsoft of old there is a gamer leading the Xbox division now with the full resources at his disposal due to the new Ceo Satya Nadella who supports Phil and believes in Xbox. Sony will have great competition next gen.

derek439d ago

Blah blah blah. We'll believe it when we see it. The next MS sees gaming as anything more than just a means to achieving something else will be the first.

lifeisgamesok440d ago (Edited 440d ago )

Please make the puzzles better. Lining up things in the environment to make a sign and unlock a door was the worst part of the game

MrVux000439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

Indeed, tho don't put the expectations too high now, since that is a recipe for a dissapointment (take for example people that are comparing this to God Of War or even stating that this is a game to rival it ...)

Wasabi439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

@MrVux

***"take for example people that are comparing this to God Of War or even stating that this is a game to rival it ..."***

There is a very definite difference between voicing an opinion that Ninja Theory's intention may be to "POSITION" its product to rival Sony's God of War and actually "STATING" that Hellblade 2 "IS" a game to rival it, we know nothing about the game other than what has been seen in the trailer, don't put words into my mouth.

In addition, clearly this response would be better positioned as a reply to my comment above, if you'd like to address my personal opinion that's fine - just have the moral courage to mention me by name and post it as a reply to my comment.

MrVux000439d ago (Edited 439d ago )

''There is a very definite difference between voicing an opinion that Ninja Theory's intention may be to "POSITION" its product to rival Sony's God of War and actually "STATING" that Hellblade 2 "IS" a game to rival it, we know nothing about the game other than what has been seen in the trailer, don't put words into my mouth.''

First, who is putting words into YOUR mouth? Thinking and stating things as i mentioned above, leads to the same damn thing, potential dissapointment.And the only thing my post was all about keeping the hype levels within reason,especially (as you pointed out) we know almost nothing about the game.

''In addition, clearly this response would be better positioned as a reply to my comment above''

You sure do have a really high opinion of yourself. And no, this was not a response to your comment specifically, since you are certainly not the only one that stated the same things, be it here on N4G or on countleess other sites.

''...just have the moral courage to mention me by name and post it as a reply to my comment.''

First don't lecture about moral courage to people you know absolutely nothing about, Second get of your high horse, unless you want to be regarded as a complete and utter c*nt.

Wasabi439d ago

@MrVux

If my comment was misdirected and what you wrote was not intended in the manner in which it was taken then I apologise mate, your initial comment featured elements that were almost word for word what I had written and your comment was posted within 10 minutes of mine - I hope you can see why I may have possibly jumped the gun in my response.

I am replying below to your last post, only to highlight my chain of thought in the response.

***"First, who is putting words into YOUR mouth?"***

"stating that this is a game to rival it" - I never stated anything, I offered an opinion on the direction NT may take the game and how it could be "positioned" to achieve this.

***"this was not a response to your comment specifically"***

As I said above, Your comment was time stamped within 10 minutes of my post and featured elements (position to rival vs stated to rival) to me this seemed to indicate a response to my post, if it wasn't intended this way apologies, no hard feelings from me.

***"unless you want to be regarded as a complete and utter c*nt"***

Haha fair one, I can see why you'd say this lol, however as a gamer that plays on all platforms and doesn't feel the need to vilify one platform over another and is quite vocal about calling out inconsistent narratives and false truths of which there seem to be many at the moment - I just automatically assume that this is the way I'm viewed anyway, nothing to lose!

As I said Vux, if I jumped the gun and your comment was taken in a manner that it was not intended please accept my apology mate.

MrVux000439d ago

Apology accepted, i also apologize for indirectly calling you c*nt.

I sugest we put this matter behind us, since we degraded ourselves enough allready.

CaptainHenry916439d ago

I never even considered Ninja theory a AAA developer to begin with. They're more like a indie developer.

ReadyPlayer22439d ago

Well Ninja Theory certainly punched above their weight with the first one. A 20 person team making a AAA game that sold millions and won 20+ awards is truly remarkable. With big budget backing and resources, they could truly make a remarkable game.

WeAreLegion439d ago

They've been making AAA games for a long time now. Heavenly Sword, Enslaved, and DMC were all huge.

ReadyPlayer22439d ago

Yeah, but Hellblade was made with a team of 20 people. Also, regarding Heavenly Sword, Ninja Theory was literally on the verge of bankruptcy so Sony helped them by funding Heavenly Sword. Even still, it didn't perform well.