In an interview with NME, Antoniades said that the team’s ambition has taken the form of an all-encompassing approach to the idea of “capturing reality.”
“The goal with Hellblade 2 isn’t to perfect it, but to create an experience that feels more believable and more refined. Its ambition in terms of scale is bigger. I think Hellblade 2 will make Hellblade look like an indie game,” said Antoniades.
Over 40 locations in Iceland were scouted and narrowed down before being scanned into Hellblade 2‘s engine. Real costumes were also created and scanned in, and Melina Juergens – who plays the titular Senua – was trained by a combat expert to perform the in-engine combat herself.
“The idea is believability – making things look real or believable – and the best way to do that is to base everything on real things,” added Antoniades.
The overall bigger ambition will also encompass questions of religion and society, whilst the first Hellblade was a more personal experience and journey.
Antoniades also said in the interview that the first game was inspired by Alex Garland’s film Ex Machina, after the filmmaker’s concept just “struck a chord” with Antoniades.
“Alex Garland had just told us about a concept that he had, which became the film Ex Machina. He said ‘there’s going to be three speaking parts, one location and a small team,” Antoniades said.