Here in the RPS treehouse of moaning about how tired and cold we are, we regularly thrill to GIFs of mid-development games, delighting to the art and animations of some unknown pleasure. It's always bittersweet when the subject of one of those GIFs becomes reality, when all the possibilities offered by that handful of frames coalesce into something known and definite. Case in point, Rain World [official site], a 2D game with wonderful sci-horror environments, sinister shadow-beasts and the hypnotic leap'n'crawl of the 'slugcat' it stars. In GIF form, it was small slices of another world. In about-to-be-released form (end of this month, specifically), I can see what it really is.
You can see both sides of the coin in the below video. Those backdrops are lovely, as is Slugcat's movement, but it's clearer now that it's a jumpy-shooty game. Not that this is a bad thing, it's just that there's readjustment required once a question is answered.
Here's a couple of the kind of GIFs I was on about (more here):
And here's full context, in the shape of a trailer in living technicolour:
The Slugcat is billed as being both predator and prey, so there'll be a stealth element too, which on paper is a neat remix from platformer mores. This is intriguing too: "Both prey and predator, the creatures in Rain World’s living ecosystem follow their own survival instincts, learning from each encounter." The titular and "bone-crushing" rain presents its own threat in addition to the creepy-crawlies and nightmare-stags.
Rain World's due out on Steam for $20 on March 28th, developed by Videocult and published by Adult Swim.