At this year's GDC we talked to project lead Justin Stander about the various ingredients that are going into the intriguing and extremely promising '80s-themed samurai sword-filled platformer by Askiisoft, Katana Zero.
During the interview Stander explained the game, saying how it's "a neo-noir action platformer. It's very, very fast paced, everyone dies in one hit - you, the enemies, everybody. It focuses on tight, fast acrobatic combat. You can slash bullets in mid-air, kill people with them. You can slow down time, you can wall jump. You can do everything that you really want to."
The project lead also told us about the influences that have informed the game's visual design, as well as the gameplay.
"The '80s obviously," Stander said before adding that "there's crazy neon lights everywhere, a bumping synth-bop soundtrack, gotta love that. And also Samurai movies, you know, Seventh Samurai, just the sort of eastern culture, I mean the whole story is basically about that, but we're not really delving into story right now.
"Gameplay wise it's just... it's kind of based on all those indie games that have that really tight, fast-paced instant death-based combat."
Early impressions lead us to believe that it's the kind of game that begs for speed runs (largely because, as Stander says "it's extremely difficult to master"), and the developer admitted that even he still dies a lot.
We also learned a bit about what the game is not: "It's definetly not a roguelike. No procedural generation, every single level is handcrafted."
During the interview we were shown the game in action, so check out that demonstration below, as well as find out more about the Telltale-like dialogue system that encourages players to think before they speak.
Katana Zero is set to land at the end of this year (or the start of next), and so far it's confirmed for PC platforms, although Stander and Askiisoft are hoping to put the game out on consoles too.
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