Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
The Theory of Senua put in to practice by Ninjas.
Ninja Theory have arguably been going from strength to strength with each game they make; 2007’s Heavenly Sword was a stunning game, visually, in the early days of the PS3, with performance capture that now seems normal. Enslaved: Odyssey to the West was maybe technically less proficient, being spread across platforms, but story wise (up until the divisive ending) had some excellent moments, and built on their performance capture technique. DmC: Devil May Cry was a fantastic action game, rebooted for a new generation.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice looks to build further on Ninja Theory’s talents, and if the level of performance capture they have achieved is any indication of the quality of the final product, they may just produce something very special.
Not only is the performance capture (and the performance itself) fantastic, but the use of audio adds even more to the psychosis that protagonist Senua is going through. Seriously, watch the trailer again, but with decent headphones (both earplugs in, don’t chew on one) or a home cinema setup – it’s striking.
With a small team (just 16!), Ninja Theory are doing something fairly out of the ordinary with the development of Hellblade, and documenting a lot of it out in the open, on www.hellblade.com – dev diaries, Q&As, sketches and cinematics – there’s a lot to digest, but the quality of their desire, and the output so far can’t be questioned.