DrinkBox Studios has made a name for themselves with inventive platformers like the Tales from Space and Guacamelee. It’s a surprise then that their next title, Severed, is unlike anything they’ve done before.
Severed is a first person dungeon crawler, akin to classic RPGS like Ultima and the original Elder Scrolls, in which you play a young woman searching for her family. The story is based around this heroine (who’s missing an arm) as she explores a mysterious dungeon. The themes are centered around the ideas of loss, death and family. As studio co-founder Graham Smith told me, the lead animator for the game was born in Mexico but now lives in the states, and based on personal experiences, he came up with the idea of a game of a young girl who misses her family.
The gameplay is a mix of Skyward Sword and Punch Out as you figure out enemy attack patterns and wait for openings to attack. The Skyward Sword style comes into play as you must attack and block at particular angles. In classic Zelda/Metroidvania style, you’ll gain new abilities as you explore and defeat bosses. The demo granted the ability to freeze combat after filling a meter which allowed me to cut off the limbs of enemies and defeat them instantly. These severed limbs (hence the name of the game) can then be used to upgrade your character’s stats and give her passive bonuses such as damage resistance, more health, or a longer lasting special meter.
As you progress through the game, you’ll encounter multiple enemies during fights. This adds layers of strategy as you’ll have to learn multiple attack patterns during encounters and you’ll need to be quick to act if you want to survive.
Severed is currently planned for the PlayStation Vita, and DrinkBox is aiming for a Summer 2015 release.
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