In 2021, Arkane revealed Redfall, a co-op vampire slayer we immediately termed "Left 4 Red". It was one of several games seemingly aiming to follow in Left 4 Dead's swarming zombie footsteps - a trend we celebrated.
'Nuh uh', say Arkane, in a new interview with Games Radar. Redfall apparently has more in common with Far Cry than Valve's co-op classic.
"It's totally understandable for somebody to come to that conclusion. There are four playable characters, you can play together cooperatively, and you're going against the undead," says Arkane creative director Ricardo Bare. "But, in terms of the way that you play and experience Redfall, it's not like those games at all. Redfall is more like loading into Far Cry."
Bare cites Redfall's open world setting as the key difference between it and horde shooters, and the direct connection to Ubisoft's Far Cry series. "You're in a big-ass open world," says Bare. "We have a home base where you can talk to NPCs and get side-quests. You can go to the mission table and pick up story-driven missions. Or you can not give a shit about any of that and just head outside; pick a direction, start hauling ass, and run into the living-world stuff that we have going on."
While much larger than the tightly packed spaces of Arkane's other games, Redfall's open world will apparently be much smaller than most of Ubisoft's recent fare. As such, there are no vehicles to help you get from one side of it to the other. "In terms of freedom, there's what you would expect from other open worlds, but Redfall is an on-foot game," says Bare. "The scale and the pace is a little slowed down in that respect. We want you creeping through a cornfield at night in the fog, hearing vampires whisper in the dark. Maybe you'll spot a farmhouse in the distance and sneak over to it, only to find that it's full of cultists and a few trapped survivors who you can save. That's the kind of vibe that Redfall has."
So not unlike Left 4 Dead, but with a very different structure and pacing than the A-to-B progress of the other games we grouped as part of the new wave of wave shooters, Back 4 Blood and The Anacrusis. I'm pleased! I've loved various Far Cry games when played co-op.