An adventure in 12-bit
Long-time Dtoid community member turned videogame developer, AgentMOO, is showing his team’s latest efforts off at PAX East, and the product looks pretty impressive thus far. High Strangeness is a top-down retro adventure game with a pretty unique hook.
Approximately ten minutes into the demo, the protagonist finds a red skull that grants him the ability to switch between 8-bit and 16-bit graphics. The style has been aptly dubbed 12-bit.
This mechanic isn’t simply an aesthetic pleaser; it plays a very important role in the way the game shakes out. Many puzzles can only be solved in one of the two views. For instance, the demo showcased a bridge that was only temporarily active. If you try to cross it in 8-bit, the character moves too slowly to make it across in time. Traversing it in 16-bit leaves you with just barely enough time to shuffle to safety.
The perspective shifting also contributes to the combat. Enemies seem to be more easily defeated in 8-bit view. However, the hero is more agile and quick-moving in 16-bit. The combination leads to a cool feeling of needing to tailor the view to the particular situation.
The demo at the show was short, but the game’s promise is high. High Strangeness is currently on Steam Greenlight as it tries to make its way to the digital distributor. It’d be awfully kind of you to show love for one of Dtoid’s finest.