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Thread: Hellblade II

  1. #1
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here

    Hellblade II



    Hellblade was a pretty important game for a couple of reasons: it attempted to do AAA game production on a AA budget (and succeeded by paring down scope and using cost-effective techniques like FMV), and it attempted to treat mental health as a non-gimmick, an actual condition that requires empathy.

    It was arguably not completely successful in the last part, making Senua's condition fetter itself to a game mechanic that involved seeing signs in the world at a consistently paced clip. But it had empathy in spades, and that was far more important. I refused to read its ending as a sequel tease, because reality tells you that stories like this don't really end. The struggle never goes away; revisiting it in a similar video game capacity would feel cheap.

    So, here we are. I'm bemused by the idea that it needs a sequel, but this is where we're at. Xbox Series X gets its first exclusive (along with PC, probably), with music by Heilung (a band I need to check out stat). The story seems to be revisiting Senua at a later date from the events of part one, and she's clearly been given importance in a tribe as a seer of some sort. Perhaps where the original was about individual psychosis, this one is poised to be about the mechanics of collective delusion. Risky either way, but one to keep an eye out for if, for nothing else, more of Melina Juergens' powerhouse performances.

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    The trailer is precariously balancing on the border wall between intriguing and silly, with most of its body hanging on the side of silliness, but after the first Hellblade I'm definitely intrigued. I also don't think the game needed a sequel, but I hope they wouldn't make a second part without taking the things seriously that gave the first game most visibility.

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Hell yes!

  4. #4
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by Thirith View Post
    The trailer is precariously balancing on the border wall between intriguing and silly, with most of its body hanging on the side of silliness...
    I popped into this thread to say almost exactly that. I couldn't quite tell if it's the goofiest thing imaginable, or the most hell yeah rock out hardcore metal spectacle of the decade.

    I've since decided that these things aren't mutually exclusive. It can be both. It is both.

  5. #5
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    It's Microsoft's marketing doing their thing. Let's not forget Halo 2's soundtrack featuring Incubus and Hoobastank for no particularly good reason (Steve Vai on the Halo theme was a good call though), while the game itself was really just Halo, but with a stupid fucking story. Heilung actually makes sense in this game, all things considered.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    I’m kinda hoping the trailer hints at a scene towards the end of Hellblade 2 that’s a Metal take on Magnolia’s “Wise Up” scene, where all the characters involved in the climactic battle join in a rendition of the same song.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Renzatic View Post
    I popped into this thread to say almost exactly that. I couldn't quite tell if it's the goofiest thing imaginable, or the most hell yeah rock out hardcore metal spectacle of the decade.
    I still say the "Goofiest, bust still most metal of the decade" title goes to:

  8. #8
    Moderator
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: Hong Kong
    I was greatly impressed by Hellblade 1 and what they were trying to do, however I loathed the combat system (maybe I just suck at it) and consequently have never finished it, despite making a lot of progress and enjoying what I played of the game. Hopefully they make combat a little more interesting this time round.

    Anyway, I love the trailer. But I'm pretty metal.

  9. #9
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by WingedKagouti View Post
    I still say the "Goofiest, bust still most metal of the decade" title goes to...
    If you think about it, the best metal is usually the cheesiest. It's like an analog of "so bad it's good." It embraces it's corniness so completely, so wholeheartedly, it manages to break through, and become truly epic.

  10. #10
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    If you're talking about stage shows, sure. But metal as a genre needs more than a concept to be good. Riffage, shreddage, and a tight rhythm section that blows your eardrums out are far, far more important than overblown lyrics which can be, yes, part of the experience. But some of the best metal songs are instrumentals. And some of the best metal songs are incredibly technical beyond the stupid lyrics. Which, to be frank, is something that isn't isolated to just metal bands - rock in general has a hard time keeping the corn on the cob. Look at anything Neil Peart wrote, for god's sake.

  11. #11
    Thing What Kicks
    Registered: Apr 2004
    Location: London
    Quote Originally Posted by Renzatic View Post
    If you think about it, the best metal is usually the cheesiest. It's like an analog of "so bad it's good." It embraces it's corniness so completely, so wholeheartedly, it manages to break through, and become truly epic.
    See:
    Manowar, Die For Metal

  12. #12
    El Pato
    Registered: Jul 2000
    Location: Under your fingernails.
    Hrrrmm...I am wary, but also piqued. Let us see what the gods deliver.

    \m/

  13. #13
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Hey, did you guys know that Hellblade 2 is out in about a week? I only knew this cuz the Xbox app on my PC told me. They've done a REALLY shit job of advertising this game.

    Anyway, Day 1 into Game Pass. I can't be assed upgrading to Ultimate try it at this time. I'm happy with Core ATM. I'm not going to switch over to PC GP either cuz I actively play online co-op on Xbox Series X several days a week.

  14. #14
    Brethren
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: Cathedral Row
    My enthusiasm for this was pretty much was cut in half when I heard there wouldn't be a VR version.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    It's UE5, right? I'd expect it'll quickly work pretty well with the Unreal Engine VR injector, and for Hellblade that may be enough. It's not as if the first game in its VR version went all that far beyond making the camera work in VR, apart from one or two (admittedly effective) moments where VR was used in more meaningful ways.

  16. #16
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    It'll very likely require a beast of a PC to run at 60 FPS (or near it), because the Series X is only going to run it at 30 FPS anyway, and UE5 isn't very performant. VR would be quite expensive to run it given it's going to be heavy right out the gate.

  17. #17
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    It'll very likely require a beast of a PC to run at 60 FPS (or near it), because the Series X is only going to run it at 30 FPS anyway, and UE5 isn't very performant.
    Depends on the features used. If you have Lumen forced on? Certainly, since it's just what Epic calls the meme lighting tech, ray tracing.

  18. #18
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2002
    Location: Edmonton
    Why do you think ray tracing is a meme?

  19. #19
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Quote Originally Posted by Aja View Post
    Why do you think ray tracing is a meme?
    Because it gives a big hit to performance hit with little visual difference a lot of the time. Usually in AAA it's just shadows and low resolution reflections, since we're largely dealing with console ports. The exceptions are usually games with full path RT, like Quake 2 RTX and Metro Exodus.

  20. #20
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    Metro Exodus doesn't have path tracing. Here's their slide deck on their implementation if you want details.

    And RT isn't just 'shadows and reflections', it grounds objects in physically correct lighting for their environments, alongside giving you things like radiosity. The point is to make things feel more 'real', and yes, that's always going to come at a cost because RT has always been one of the most computation-intensive ways to render a scene we've had since it was possible to do so. As for Lumen, while it's not path tracing either, it's a lower-cost version of RT lighting relative to path tracing and some other implementations, and has its place when done right alongside those virtual shadow maps. Robocop didn't look half bad, after all.

  21. #21
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    And RT isn't just 'shadows and reflections',.
    I said that's typically the implementation you see in AAA multi-plats. They're developing for the lowest common denominator first, being consoles.

    Hellblade 2 is out now. Nekminnit MS announces studio closure, cuz they didn't recoup the zillions of losses spent on making a cutting edge graphical game, made with cutting edge mo cap technology. Of course launching almost exclusively on a platform that nobody plays where they can rent it for next to nothing won't factor into this, NOPE, NAH UH.
    https://store.steampowered.com/app/2..._Hellblade_II/

    Sent from my SM-G986B using Tapatalk

  22. #22
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    Yeah, I'm saying that's still incorrect. RTGI's a large component of the ray tracing pipeline in games, and some of the current-gen console games that use it are the new Avatar game, FFXVI, Jedi Survivor, and Dragon's Dogma 2, and that's not counting the ones that use Lumen, which is a form of RTGI. Your impressions seem to be of games that were early on in the generation, cross-gen, or both. Whether the game is multiplat or not has little bearing as to whether it uses the full suite of RT; it's more about what the devs are willing to sacrifice to hit a frame-rate target. At 30 FPS, you get more leeway to add 'proper' RT in, and that's what we're seeing now - including with Hellblade 2, which is almost definitely using Lumen.

  23. #23
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    Your impressions seem to be of games that were early on in the generation, cross-gen, or both.
    That is the case. Thanks for clarifying.

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    It'll very likely require a beast of a PC to run at 60 FPS (or near it), because the Series X is only going to run it at 30 FPS anyway, and UE5 isn't very performant. VR would be quite expensive to run it given it's going to be heavy right out the gate.
    You’re probably right, but it does look very nice…

  25. #25
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    So anyone playing this yet?

    It's in the gamepass so I played the opening bit and a chunk of the next bit. It looks pretty, in a boring photorealism way. You run around drab landscapes doing boring combat and boring puzzles while the voices keep chattering in your ear. Eh! Maybe it picks up at some point.

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