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Outward: The Adventurer Life Sim - New PAX West Trailer

New open-world RPG trailer seeks to ditch Fantasy clichés and strike out on its own path

Nine Dots Studio have released a new trailer for Outward; and announced that their open-world RPG will be playable for the first time at PAX West. The game is described on its Steam Greenlight page as being “The Adventurer Life Sim”.

Taking the long-established tropes of Fantasy RPG protagonists and trashing them, Outward immediately tells us that we’re not heroes or chosen ones. No, we are simply normal people, venturing out into the wild and facing our own terrifying vulnerability.

Outward imagines what it would really be like to be an adventurer in a fantasy world. A dynamic world will continue to revolve regardless of your actions, meaning that quests and story lines can continue or pass you by whether you’re there to experience them or not.

The game will combine survival elements with its fantasy setting in an attempt to “create a new RPG sub-genre”. The player will have to face the perils of combat and exploration, as well as struggle for survival by maintaining adequate amounts of food, water and sleep.

The harsh reality of adventuring and exploration is reinforced through movement-restricting inventory, time-consuming and preparation-heavy ritualistic magic, and repercussions for wearing inappropriate armor and clothing in extreme environments. Death might not be the end result of losing a fight. One might instead wake up - beaten, bruised and robbed - but able to go on and start over with strength of resolve.

There will also be the option to journey with a friend in co-op mode, where two players can survive together in split-screen either locally or online. That’s right: players can interact in split-screen co-op even when they’re connected online, creating the possibility for some unique co-op experiences.

However, perhaps the most innovative feature of the upcoming game will be its constant auto-saving, which prevents any backtracking. Whatever decisions you make, you’ll be stuck with them and their consequences without the opportunity to simply reload an earlier save.

This is all part of Nine Dots’ drive to re-invent and put a twist on the Fantasy RPG - and has the potential to be quite polarizing amongst fans of the genre. Just how these gameplay mechanics will come together is unclear as of yet, but more information will be revealed when the game is playable at PAX West this September.

Outward is currently in development for PC and console. Stay tuned to Nine Dots’ website for updates and future news on a release date. 

Published Aug. 23rd 2016

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