The Anacrusis First Look – not your routine Left 4 Dead

Out of all the games that were shown during the Summer Game Fest today, one that players may have forgotten about is The Anacrusis, a game that takes the Left 4 Dead formula, throws in a wacky 60’s style of Portal, and gives you a whole mess of aliens to take on. It’s the sort of game that’ll easily stand out for Xbox and PC owners when it arrives later this Fall.

The game takes you into the reaches of Space, where you’ll work with four quirky characters – Nessa, Guion, Liu and Lance – as you take part in a battle with a newly discovered alien race aboard their vessel. They’ll need to fight them off if they hope to make it home in one piece…and that’s easier said than done.

The Anacrusis is the work of former Valve writer Chet Faliszek, who’s working alongside his new studio Stray Bombay. However where his previous work kind of shows in the game’s design, it stands out as something else because of a few key decisions with its development.

First off, it’s going more for a humorous, yet still “we’re in deep caca” approach, as the dialogue adds a bit to the characters, as well as the situations surrounding them when aliens begin showing up. Yet it’s still all about the challenge of the game, and it shows.

For good measure, the game has an ever-changing style of design. With the help of the AI driver, enemy spawns change, bosses have different patterns, and the places to find weapons and health kits are consistently changed up. This keeps things fresh as you try to figure out your next move, so that the game’s patterns won’t grow stale.

There’s also balancing. Newcomers, for instance, won’t be left out in the cold as veteran players have more perks. There will be options that balance things out, so players won’t feel like they’re missing out on anything. What’s more, they’ll be able to grow with experience, and feel like a vital part of the team.

That leads to the perks. With these perks, you can change the way you play. While they haven’t been fully detailed just yet, they promise to be convincingly cool, mixing in with your defensive techniques and weapons play to make sure you don’t fall behind. On top of that, new perks also unlock over the course of the game, adding to its replay value.

Oh, and we mentioned the game is co-op, right? Like the Left 4 Dead games, it supports up to four players in team play, though it’s unknown if it’ll support crossplay. Considering it’s coming to Xbox Game Pass for PC and Xbox consoles at launch, however, it’s very likely to happen.

Though it’s a fresh start for Stray Bombay, The Anacrusis has a lot of promises that could truly make it stand out in the overcrowded co-op shooting market. We’ll see how it shapes up when it arrives in a few months. In the meantime, enjoy the wicked trailer below and prepare for an intergalactic trip like you’ve never imagined it before!

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