There aren’t many new games out there that re ambitious. Sure there are a ton of open-world titles but most of them are derivative and repetitive. They lack nuance or fail to take any risks we haven’t seen before. Leave it to indies to challenge the status quo, though; and Virtual Unreality is doing just that with their unique new open-world adventure, Project Sky, which is powered by the Unity 3D game engine.
As the headline states, it’s a lot like Monster Hunter insofar that you’ll need to master your environment by understanding the terrain, the best routes for traversal, and utilizing the right kind of tactics to take down enemies. But even more than that you’ll need to learn how to survive by hunting enemies, looting their bodies, and stocking up on supplies before you face off against some massive bosses.
This is where the comparisons to Shadow of the Colossus come from. You’ll have to make sure you’re well equipped and very perceptive about how you face off against the massive bosses in the game, all while making use of a giant wolf that you ride into battle. The developers have been trickling off a small smattering of videos and images of Project Sky to give you an idea of what the gameplay is like.
Sometimes, the best course of action is to charge forward through the fire and the flames. Added the Warstrider’s ‘ultimate’ ability. Some hawkwolves also now become ‘Shockwolves’ if hit by electricity, for a time.#indiedev #gamedev #madewithunity #Unity #indiegame #ProjectSky pic.twitter.com/HVSmwH5We8
— Project Sky (@ProjectSky_Game) October 18, 2019
A month and a half after I said I’d work on it, the Warstrider is now kill-able. Even while dying the Warstrider continues to chase you. I played around with decals as well for the scorch marks you see after it dies.#indiedev #gamedev #madewithunity #Unity #indiegame #ProjectSky pic.twitter.com/u3mV4Hq48l
— Project Sky (@ProjectSky_Game) October 19, 2019
In one clip we see a barrage of missile fire raining down from the heavens toward the player-character and their mounted pet known as a hawkwolf.
The hawkwolves are large beasts, like a mix between dire wolves and griffins.
They can run fast and also glide, giving them a lot of mobility and maneuverability during the epic boss encounters.
The team is working overtime to ensure that the hawkwolves have believable and endearing behavioral patterns, which is why they’re putting in the extra time with the AI pathfinding even when you aren’t riding one.
Worked on AI pathfinding today; combined 3 clips into 1.
– Hawkwolves can find their way back to you.
– AI can navigate the insides of buildings.
– Village patrols will leave their homes at dawn.#indiedev #gamedev #madewithunity #Unity #indiegame #ProjectSky #screenshotsaturday pic.twitter.com/j3GOE2SS97
— Project Sky (@ProjectSky_Game) November 9, 2019
One really awesome clip that they showcased was an NPC companion riding her own hawkwolf and accompanying the player across a snowy tundra. We also see that two other hawkwolves have joined them as well.
If it’s possible to hunt in packs then Project Sky could make for some very interesting encounters.
Is a group of hawkwolves called a flock or a pack? Maybe, ‘Flockwolves’? I’m going to go with pack. Here’s a quick clip showing off a few more flavours of hawkwolf, plus my companion riding her own.#indiedev #gamedev #madewithunity #Unity #indiegame #ProjectSky pic.twitter.com/u3uH1i7T6i
— Project Sky (@ProjectSky_Game) November 2, 2019
Also, mad props to Seth DeGrâce for the animations in the game. The blend morphs are superb, and the transitions between states are practically seamless.
The hawkwolves move with a lot of believability and weight, which is absolutely vital in making players feel immersed whenever they do interact with the creatures. The reactions and adjustments to the change in momentum are also a really nice touch when you’re moving fast and alter directions or attempt to come to a halt after gliding quickly across the terrain. It’s one of the reasons Monster Hunter is so beloved, because the animation team puts a lot of time and effort into making sure each and every monster has idiosyncrasies and believable weight to their movement.
In between fighting the bosses, though, players will encounter bandits, ruffians, and other types of NPC enemies. As mentioned at the top of the article, you’ll need to loot them for supplies and materials to upgrade your character.
I’ve started working on the ability to loot different characters. UI is going to be redone, I have a few cooler ideas for it – especially for the looting of machines.#indiedev #gamedev #madewithunity #Unity #indiegame #ProjectSky pic.twitter.com/DoUrED19F5
— Project Sky (@ProjectSky_Game) November 11, 2019
Another neat thing is that the game is physics-based.
During the boss fight we see that the armor plating that falls to the ground can injure the player-character, but it can also be used defensively to hide behind during battle.
Small update before I get to work on that last warstrider weapon… Large pieces of falling armour are hazardous. They also become a traversable piece of terrain, and resources you can harvest for materials.#indiedev #gamedev #madewithunity #Unity #indiegame #ProjectSky pic.twitter.com/VfBUmy8eoV
— Project Sky (@ProjectSky_Game) October 15, 2019
I’m really impressed with what I’ve seen so far.
It’s a shame we don’t get more games like this from the AAA studios, but instead end up with a bunch of loot-box infested multiplayer shooters with ho-hum gameplay, forgettable enemies, and an ultra-woke storyline with obnoxious, “diversity”-plagued characters.
Hopefully the developers at Virtual Unreality keep doing what they’re doing and continue to inch their way toward completion because Project Sky looks like it could be a really fun game to play once it’s complete.