After making “holesome” game Donut County, developer Ben Esposito decided to change direction with his new game Neon White.
In a new gameplay trailer, the developer began by saying, “In 2018, I released Donut County, a wholesome game designed for kids and adults alike. After that, I decided that my next game will not be for kids or adults. It’ll be a game for freaks.”
Premiering during Annapurna Interactive‘s debut showcase yesterday (July 29), Esposito describes Neon White as a “single-player speed-running FPS where you can sacrifice your guns for godlike parkour moves”.
The first-person action is however combined with deckbuilding mechanics as instead of a gun, the player uses Soul Cards, which has magic to act like guns or it can be discarded to use a special move ability such as a double jump, giving players the option between shooting or traversal.
For speedrunners and explorers, however, it appears there is a greater incentive to use the special moves in order clear levels faster or reach secret areas and items.
The tightly designed and hand-crafted levels in Neon White are designed to be replayed, whether it’s competing with friends on global online leaderboards, are gaining XP called Insight, which unlocks more missions and provides hints for hidden collectibles and shortcuts.
Set in Heaven, the player is an assassin competing with other assassins to purge the realm from a demonic invasion with a chance to stay. It is however also possible to get to know the other assassins and discover their backstory, which unfolds like a visual novel, where giving gifts can also deepen relationships and unlock new dialogue options.
Neon White was originally announced for Nintendo Switch during February’s Nintendo Direct, although it is coming to both Switch and PC this winter.
The Annapurna Interactive showcase also provided a more detailed gameplay walkthrough of cat adventure Stray, which has been delayed to 2022.