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Tunic trailer: an adorable fox meets lovely lighting

Tunic

While Instagram is replete with unicorns and mermaids, videogames seem intent on sticking with cute foxes as their go-to adorable animals. Foxes have been having a “moment” for YEARS! All of which is my way of saying that Tunic [official site] is an adorable-looking adventure starring a fox which has a new trailer.

I believe I first saw Tunic at GDC but it was during an evening mixer which was so packed that I couldn’t actually elbow my way over to the game. Seriously. It was like being a kid on a commuter train. FYI I have been designing a prototype commuter snorkel over on Twitter for exactly this sort of scenario. The game itself has been kicking around far longer but under its previous name, Secret Legend. John loved the hands-on time he had with it a couple of years ago. Now there is a Tunic trailer which we can all watch to see more of the game’s current state:

“Tunic is an action adventure about a tiny fox in a big world. Explore the wilderness, discover spooky ruins, and fight terrible creatures from long ago.”

I think the most immediate comparison is to Zelda, not just because of the green tunic but because of the way the world seems to work – the way you fight as well as the way each interaction seems to have been designed with care and often with delight. Whether the story side of things will hold up I have no idea, but the big draw for me is actually how the light works.

From the start of the trailer it just seemed pretty average – a light source to flesh out the shapes and add that sense of being 3D as well as helping you read your environment. It’s standard bright daylight which lights some planes and casts shadows. But then about 25 seconds in you get this stunning change. It’s dappled light that looks like it’s falling through a forest canopy. It also sways gently. Not enough to distract but enough to feel like the light is shining through a living element of the world. Is it weird to say I want to see more just to see what else they do with the lighting?

The game itself is expected to release in 2018. In the meantime you can watch the light move in the background of the game’s official website.

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Philippa Warr

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