Detroit: Become Human – Quantic Dream’s Another Take On Interactive Drama, Everything We Know
Detroit: Become Human has finally been announced to release on 25th May this year. Being on many of the ‘Most Anticipated Titles of 2018’ lists throughout the Internet, the game will be the next game from Quantic Dream Studios and will be heading to PS4 in less than 3 months. In light of this announcement, we’ve gathered everything we have on the latest PS4 exclusive, so hop on to the hype train!
Detroit: Become Human – What We Know So Far!
Detroit: Become Human is described as a neo-noir thriller set in the not-so-distant future. The game, just like its predecessors which we’ll come to later on, is a cinematic and interactive story-driven video game which is based around choices of the players and how these choices lead to different consequences.
The game is written and directed by David Cage and Adam Williams, names which you will be awfully familiar with if you were fans of his previous project: Fahrenheit, Heavy Rain, and Beyond: Two Souls, all of which invented the new genre of ‘Interactive Drama’ in the world of gaming. The game will be published by Sony Entertainment so will be playable on PS4 only.
The game is actually derived from a little project from Quantic Dream in 2012 which was named ‘Kara’. Kara was a tech-demo which was displayed as a prototype of the technology and engine that the company was capable of. This soon led to development of a new IP, with the company’s main man, David Cage returning to helm the project. It took David Cage more than two years to write the script for the game.
The game will have single-player mode only, as is the case for titles like these. The game will have three primary playable characters in the form of three Androids : Kara, Connor, and Markus. Let’s delve into the world and the main plot details of this genre defining title.
Story, Characters, And Setting
The game is set in Detroit City in 2036 that has been introduced to the invention of life-like Androids. The setting is lush, cyberpunk-ish and has that blue hue which you have in blockbuster Hollywood movies. Androids have been around for quite a while working as servants for the human race completing everyday routine tasks.
During all this time, the human race gets all smugly and uses these Androids as soulless objects. This doesn’t last for long since some of these Androids attain sentience and rise up with a lot of questions. They start to act and feel more like humans. This doesn’t bode well for the race which created these guys and so tensions reach their peak.
Creations of humans gaining consciousness, the concept has been around for a while now with films like Blade Runner and TV series like HBO’s Westworld tackling it best. It’ll be interesting what the video game industry can do to breathe new life into the idea, and not seem generic in the process. This is a duty given into the hands of Detroit: Become Human.
The three main protagonists of the game have varying different personalities and roles to play in the society but all share the same flesh, that of an artificially created being. First up is Kara, who like all other Androids, can be identified easily as an Android by a circle on her right temple.
She is a newly created AI being who’s discovering civilization, a brave new world for her as she learns the ways the society and the many challenges it comes with. In one of the trailers, she feels fear as she tells her operator who is as baffled as Kara herself upon expression of these emotions. Next up is Connor who, like Harrison Ford in Blade Runner, hunts down self-conscious Androids who seem to have deviated from their core program.
Whether Connor himself is conscious remains to be seen. Connor’s character is likely to bring more of the action scenarios to the game as he uses his futuristic firearms to deal with many of the situations. Lastly, we have Markus, who has the noble objective of helping his fellow Androids and break them free of the chains humans have put them in.
Markus hacks into and messes with the programming of Androids in such a way as to make them feel ‘alive’. Apart from these there are also a handful of other colorful and intriguing characters which we can’t way to interact with when the game launches.
Gameplay And Mechanics
The game is played from a third-person perspective though camera angles can be altered and are controllable to a variable degree. Since the game aims to be immersive in its narrative, cutscenes and QTEs are quite frequent. As with other titles from Quantic Dream, the progression of the different characters in the game is completely dependent on player’s choice.
This could result in death of major characters, bonus cutscenes with other relevant story details, and story branching all crazy-like and taking drastically different routes. It goes without saying that choices in the game will make up for some brutally interesting twists and turns throughout the campaign.
There will never be a ‘Game Over’ or ‘Retry’ screen because the game will keep branching depending on your decisions throughout the story. Wow! Why not watch how a similar choice-based scenario in the game plays out:
An interesting feature that Connor brings into the gameplay aspect of the game is Augmented Vision, a type of detective mode in Batman games, to analyses the environment to find clues and assess the situation accordingly. Players can also interact a lot with the environment going down to even the smallest details like turning off a stove.
Motion-capture, Facial Animations, And Acting Credits
Even from the trailers you can see how the game values detail in how the characters look, emote, and sound. To achieve this, Quantic Dream cast hundreds of actors from Los Angeles, London, and Paris until they could come up with someone who met the criteria and it really shows in trailers like these:
Tremendous voice acting and breathtaking visuals could already be expected from this heavily anticipated title. All of this makes sense too since to feel like a human and personal tale, the game should look as close to a movie as possible. Blending realism with a virtual world is what projects from Quantic Dream are all about.
Detroit: Become Human is shaping up to be quite the unique game fans of interactive storytelling games have been waiting for. David Cage has been in control of this medium for a long time now and it doesn’t seem like if he’ll be losing it soon. We can’t wait to get our hands on it. May 25 can’t come soon enough!