Hyper Light Drifter wasn’t just the perfect name for a videogame, it was also the perfect concept art, the combination of which acted as an accelerant for a Kickstarter that asked for $27,000 and ended up buried in over $645k. It seems like all this isn’t a fluke, either, because the game itself looks like a fever dream from the minds of those of us who grew up with such top-down exploro-combat games in the ’90s, only to see them vanish with the cathode ray afterimages of that era. Of course it’s stomping on the unclipped toes of a sleepy and unimaginative Action RPG genre too, so that’s to be welcomed.
You’ll want to have a look, and have a listen, below. It’s beautiful.
I’d say something like “more of this sort of thing”, but I am acutely aware that there’s an eternal scarcity of beautifully imagined, concisely realised games of this kind. Perhaps this will be enough. I look forward to next summer, when RPS writer drones will be scrapping with each other to play this.
As a related note, it’s worth having a read of this Q&A.