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Future Arkane Titles Might Not Follow Linear Level Structure, Interview Reveals

Posted on September 2, 2022 by Nick Moreno

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Since the founding of developer Arkane Studios, the team remains to stand at the pinnacle for single-player experiences. From world building to intuitive gameplay and even charm, the projects that come from the game studio remains to stay refreshing and interesting. With the release of Deathloop last year, the developer took different routes to understand what it was truly making.

While similarly structured to Dishonored, the new release does deviate to make Deathloop unique. When speaking to Rock Paper Shotgun, Arkane Lyon campaign director Dana Nightingale and studio head Dinga Bakaba, the developer experimented until properly understanding where the game was going. Nightingale did acknowledge replaying a game is the best way to truly experience a title in its entirety.

So, the team at Arkane Lyon found a way to implement that into the core gameplay with the time loop becoming the base of the experience and even the meat of the story as well. “I feel like to properly experience everything that has to offer, you have to play it at least four times. I love making that kind of thing, where the choices you have are so meaningful, and they diverge so greatly, that it’s worth playing again to see everything else,” she explained.

So, how do we make a game where we do that, but help the player feel like going back and trying the different outcomes? We want to make that part of the experience. Our fans love to replay our games, but it hasn’t really been built into the experience to do that – with Deathloop it is.

One complication with Deathloop is the incentive on how to play. Ultimately Bakaba told that the game is suited for either play style. Unlike Dishonored does feature a consequence system that forges the end of the story while playing, Deathloop encourages players to experience the game how they are most comfortable. He explained that Dishonored: Death of the Outsider experimented with that prior to Deathloop.

“And then Deathloop is one step further in that direction, of telling the player that there isn’t a right way to play. Whatever way you choose to play through the day, you can take another one entirely the next day, and it’s in the middle of the same campaign. That was always one of the objectives, it’s de-emphasising the idea that there’s a right way to play. I think, inherently, that immersive sims and Arkane games are about this dialogue with the player.”

Most intriguing is that following the release of Deathloop, Arkane might not be working on more linear experiences. While the core of the game is certainly unique to Dishonored, the level structure is fairly the same fundamentally. But, Nightingale told that she has no interest to continue in that direction. So far, Redfall shows to be a manifestation of the decision.

“I don’t feel any interest in making a completely linear campaign again. It’s not something I want to do again. I fell in love with the way Deathloop is structured, where the players’ goals are their own.” The same was also said about Dishonored ultimately, but bakaba then shared that a return to the IP is possible later on. Howbeit, the main story has been finished. You can read the full report by heading here.

Are you surprised by the statement on the possible future of Arkane titles?

Source: Rock Paper Shotgun

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