Tonight was Annapurna Interactive’s second annual showcase, revealing what’s to come for the publisher over the next few months.
Fresh off the release of viral cat sensation Stray, the showcase featured a deeper look at some previously announced games, some brand new reveals, and insight into the indie devs the publisher is currently working with.
First up was an in-depth look at the joyful and surreal Thirsty Suitors from Outerloop Games. It’s an action-RPG about fighting exes, disappointing parents and finding yourself, says the developer.
Footage revealed the game’s turn-based combat that sees the young female protagonist squaring up against those titular thirsty suitors. Amusing taunts shift suitor moods to debuff them, while dialogue choices build the personality of the protagonist. Eventually, the opposing suitor drags her into his inner psychic world, but the battle ends with reconciliation rather than defeat.
It’s Persona meets Scott Pilgrim, with a unique Indian-American perspective that marries culture and gameplay. Throw in accessible but deep skating gameplay on the side and a vibrant aesthetic, and Thirsty Suitors is looking absolutely wonderful. It’s due out in 2023 across PC (Steam), Xbox consoles (Game Pass), PlayStation consoles, and Switch.
Next up was Hindsight, the previously revealed melancholic narrative game from the creator of mobile game Prune. The new trailer hinted further at its intriguing plot and sombre tone and revealed the release date: 4th August on Switch, Steam and iOS.
The showcase also announced some brand new titles.
Most interesting was closer The Lost Wild, which should appease Dino Crisis fans. Brighton-based developer Great Ape Games has created a first-person survival horror in a Jurassic Park-esque dinosaur-infested jungle, and it’s available to wishlist now on Steam (consoles TBA).
Also intriguing was Flock, from the creators of Hohokum. Its vibrant, almost alien worlds appear to be like underwater above ground: expect flying whales, shoals of fish swimming through the air, and fluffy cloud sheep, all accompanied by a beautiful electronic score. The multiplayer co-op game will release on Xbox consoles (Game Pass), PlayStation consoles, and PC (Steam).
As for Hohokum, the cult classic art game previously published by Sony for PS3, 4, and Vita is also out now on Steam.
Fans of Katamari Damacy will be pleased to know its creator Keita Takahashi is working on a brand new game, but we only saw the title: Uvula.
There was also Bounty Star, which puts third person mech shooting into a sort of Wild West setting with likeable protagonist Clementine McKinney. It’s coming to Xbox consoles (Game Pass), plus PlayStation consoles and PC (Steam) – expect farming and base building too.
A number of games already available are coming out on new platforms. That includes: Outer Wilds coming to PS5 and Xbox Series X/S on 15th September as a free upgrade with 60FPS (the Switch port is also still on the way); The Pathless and Maquette both coming to Xbox and Switch this winter; Solar Ash arriving on Steam on 6th December and Xbox Game Pass this winter; and What Remains of Edith Finch out now on Series X/S and PS5 with 4K and 60FPS.
Finally, developer spotlights throughout the showcase revealed a sneak peak at some forthcoming projects.
Cardboard Computer, the team behind Kentucky Route Zero, are working on a new game with lively animations and comedy – quite the turnaround. All we saw was a cute animated dog, though.
New developer Yarn Owl is working on a Zelda-style action adventure game. And another new developer, Third Shift (from Germany) are creating Forever Ago – a narrative game about an elderly gentleman documenting a road trip through photography.
Lastly, the next game from Irish developer Dreamfeel will be set in a fantasy version of Ireland and feature… cats. Finally! It will feature hand drawn characters and be themed around coming together in the face of adversity, just like its previous transgender narrative game If Found.