There are a ton of games that come and go that sometimes make you feel as if they're hardly worth remembering or as if they barely lived up well to their own hype. Sometimes, however, there are games that arrive on the market featuring some nearly indisputably intriguing gameplay mechanics that resonate well with us during and after the initial gameplay... Reset could be one of those games.
Theory Interactive has unleashed several videos rounding the end of 2013 for their upcoming title, Reset. I imagine it was easy for a lot of gamers to have missed the videos because they're from a small indie studio, but I guess it's a good thing they managed to find their way out into the wild.
Theory Interactive recently completed a successful IndieGoGo run for their game, which is running on their own in-house built engine called Praxis. Sounds like something from Deus Ex, eh?
Well, the Praxis engine is a low-budget endeavor from the developers yet it looks like something you would expect from the latest high-end development suite from Crytek or Epic Games.
The video above showcases the engine at work in a gameplay atmosphere; players moving and interacting with an active scenario using the “reset” function – which is uber cool, by the way. However, we really see the engine shine in the trailer below:
We're looking at a lot of subtle lighting techniques in effect, from multi-casted shadows to near realistic light diffusion and light tracing, the Praxis engine handles a lot of different graphics processing scenarios like a champ. The day-time scenarios look especially appeasing, as we can see the details clearly on the assets and how the light interacts with the environmental entities.
The gameplay seems to be a mix of Portal meets Braid meets Blinx. I'm definitely curious to see what else the game has in store. For now, though, the technical design mechanics of the project certainly don't look like a low-budget indie game, and in a way it does make you question where a lot of the resources go to in AAA projects, outside of the scripted Hollywood blockbuster moments.
In short, Reset really does put to shame a lot of the bigger studio games where the graphics are very “meh'ish” while at the same time rocking aesthetics and an atmosphere that looks like it was cut from the same cloth of the Quake formula for modern military shooters.
However, a cool aesthetic and some fancy graphics aren't always enough to make a winning game. The real challenge is in the gameplay being able to tie-in the aesthetics so that the game not only stands out visually, but immersively as well.
If Reset's gameplay can keep pace with its visuals, then it'll be yet another indie showing up the mainstream AAA business.