Behemoth Looks Like Shadow of the Colossus in VR – GameRant
Skydance Interactive’s new game Behemoth for Meta’s Quest 2 was revealed at The Game Awards 2022, and it looks a lot like Shadow of the Colossus.
The Game Awards 2022 have now come and gone, but the wealth of game announcements from the show are still making waves across the gaming community. The trailer for Behemoth, a virtual reality game in development from Skydance Interactive, is one such announcement. The trailer released was only a cinematic teaser, but Behemoth appears to be a dark fantasy sword fighting game where the player must take down a massive beast similar to those found in Shadow Of The Colossus.
Players may be familiar with Skydance Interactive's previous VR experiences The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners and Archangel, the former of which was a critical darling and has remained popular since its release. The company is part of a larger digital media organization with ties to the VFX and film industry, which is on full display in Behemoth's vibrant and action-packed trailer. The opportunity to slay a terrifying beast at the scale Skydance is attempting could be as revolutionary to VR as Shadow Of The Colossus was for the PlayStation 2.
It is difficult to overstate the potential for Behemoth to deliver on the scale that Shadow Of The Colossus's boss fights were so famous for in the PlayStation 2 era. Anyone who has had the pleasure of experiencing VR will say that large and open environments are where the medium is at its best. While many video games have attempted to capture a sense of vastness within the confines of a TV screen, with virtual reality, creating a real sense of scale is as simple as building a large environment and letting players explore.
When players walk across tall buildings in VR, they can feel vertigo within their own bodies. They can feel claustrophobia simply by how small a room is relative to their own bodies. The player's brain creates these sensations organically because of the increased immersion of virtual reality. What this means is that while Behemoth may not be able to replicate the rushes of cold mountain winds or the sensation of gripping to a monstrous beast directly, the visual and sonic spectacle of virtual reality will fill in the most important gaps of that experience. Having the player be whipped around by the wind while they slowly scramble atop a creature whose sheer size makes the player feel as small as an ant by comparison, embodying that kind of experience will be something as yet unseen in virtual reality.
With virtual reality it is often a development challenge to reduce the mental dissonance caused by navigating an environment without the ability to walk around naturally. The kind of fast-paced, movement-heavy rope-swinging shown in the cinematic trailer for Behemoth may be a recipe for nausea rather than adrenaline depending on how intense of an experience Skydance Interactive intends to create. Given the studio's previous track record with The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners and Archangel though, the developers have plenty of experience creating fine-tuned VR experiences for players which bodes well for Behemoth.
While gameplay has not been shown yet, the trailer suggests a combination of fantasy-inspired swordplay and climbing mechanics. Climbing works very well in VR thanks to the fact that vertical movement can be controlled entirely by the players hands. Forward movement with a joystick can cause players to lose their balance or become nauseous due since the brain feels that it should be moving forward while the body remains stationary. Focusing on mostly stationary combat and interspersing it with vertical climbing segments suits virtual reality very well and suggests that Skydance Interactive are making an experience that will be accessible to VR veterans and novices alike.
As a major release for the Meta Quest 2, which serves as a key ambassador of VR technology for non-enthusiasts, Behemoth is well-positioned to be a headset seller if it can live up to the hype. Skydance Interactive's deep experience with VR and the clear institutional push behind Behemoth suggests that Meta has a great deal of confidence in Skydance Interactive. As Behemoth's release draws nearer, it will be interesting to see what elements of this cinematic trailer make it into the final release.
Behemoth is in development.
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