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Anodyne 2: Return To Dust explains its weird dimension-hopping antics

The game speaks for itself, as you can see

Anodyne 2 is an odd looking thing, channelling the uncanny style of N64 and PSX games, except when it's not. Folks following the development of the action-adventure sequel have spotted that some of the screenshots appear to be in the chunky, 2D early 16-bit style of the original Anodyne. Oh, and it's also a rhythm game too, and a driving game, somehow? It's probably for the best that dev Sean Han Tani of Analgesic Productions has gotten trapped in the video dimension. His new form allows him to explain what's going on in a lovely bit of internally narrated footage below.

Building on the humble theme of the original game - your primary interaction with the world was a broom, used to sweep or relocate dust - the sequel has you playing as Nano Cleaner Nova. She apparently has all manner of strange techno-magical powers to help her complete her mission: Cleaning up a bunch of wayward Nano Dust. This futuristic irritant does more than gather in your PC's fans - it apparently gums up NPCs personalities, too. Nova needs to shrink herself down to microscopic sprite size, so she can navigate the tiny 2D worlds inside people to de-gunk them.

Cover image for YouTube video

It's all beautifully strange. The creature in the video, Gustine, is apparently a huge pink skinless thing with a big floppy tongue and players need to complete a little rhythm game to get close enough. Outer appearance seems reflected in its meaty internals too - there's flesh-blocks, walls of meat and puzzles involving retracting tongues. Other shots have shown wildly different styles inside other creatures. Sean also remains trapped in video-world, though this article will hopefully break that curse. I'd imagine it's easier to work on games when you're on the outside, but I'm no nano-wizard.

Anodyne 2: Return To Dust is due out "early 2019", although that's probably with the assumption that Sean regains his three-dimensional form soon. You can find it here on Itch and Steam.

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Dominic Tarason

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