Hot on the heels of some negative press, Rime developer Grey Box offers an explanation and a freebie.
We’ve been following Rime quite closely here at Grab It. For the most part, that’s because it looks amazing. Stuck somewhere between Journey, The Witness and Legend of Zelda, it’s focused on exploration, environmental puzzle-solving and the mystery of how a young boy got marooned on an island full of ancient ruins. It’s one of those indie games that really turns heads.
Unfortunately, it started turning heads for the wrong reason when the pricing for the Switch version of the game arrived. At $79.95 here in Australia, it was $20 more than the Xbox One and PS4 versions of the same game. Nintendo fans were quick to take up arms – by which we mean sound-off in forums - and Grey Box was paying attention. The developer just sent us the following peace offering:
The Australian pricing for exciting, upcoming indie adventure puzzler RiME has thrown a surprise figure at Nintendo Switch owners. It's Double!
Update: The distributor just sent through revised pricing due to an error in the initial price release. New pricing is $79.95 on Switch, $59.95 on Xbox One and PS4, and $49.95 on PC. So the price gap is $20 to other consoles and $30 to PC. Still significant.
RiME is one of the more promising looking indie titles coming out in 2017 – one we highlighted in our sister site's Nintendo Switch Guide (see below). The game is like a cross between The Legend of Zelda, The Witness and Ico, mixing in puzzle-solving and adventure-like exploration with a more introspective tone and atmosphere. You play as a seemingly cursed young boy left shipwrecked and alone on a rugged, but beautiful island.
Your goal is to escape, which means discovering the secrets of this place. The action is less about combat and more about exploration and puzzle-solving, the latter using elements like light, sound, time and perspective. It’s all set in a large environment navigated to via an over-world, and it looks gorgeous - you can see the full trailer below.
The Nintendo Switch launch games in Australia aren’t what the locals expected.
The Nintendo Switch launched at midnight in Australia, with lucky fans already well and truly deep into games like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. It is the big system seller of the launch window, and what we’ve played thus far has been truly incredible - a fantastic gaming experience and a must-own. You can read more about it in the Nintendo Switch Magazine. It is not alone at launch, of course. In all 12 games were set to launch alongside the Switch, the lowest in 21 years. However, when Australians opened up the eShop for the first time, they weren’t greeted with the list of titles they expected.
Indie developer Camouflaj is keen to bring its episodic, dystopian stealth adventure to the Nintendo Switch.
One of our favourite ever indie games is République. Broken into five episodes, the first of which released on iOS devices in late 2013, it’s heavily inspired by the likes of BioShock and Metal Gear Solid. In fact, the developer’s founder, Ryan Payton, worked on the MGS series for some ten years – as well as Halo – and that blockbuster mentality transitions to the game. It was one of the first indies we can remember that tried to really push into that polished, full gaming experience that has now become standard.
The game stars a young girl called Hope, held against her will in a dystopian, totalitarian society called Metamorphosis. You play as yourself, an individual who has hacked into this society and managed to get in touch with Hope. She pleads for you to help her escape, and by viewing the world through security cameras you’re able to guide her past threats and around the maze-like facility. Finding clues, upgrading equipment, eavesdropping and slowly unravelling the mystery around this place also feature heavily. The game looks a treat, has innovative touch-centric controls, a deep lore with plenty to discover and just plain fun gameplay.
After its bow on iOS in 2013, République came to Android in 2014, PC and Mac in 2015 and, alongside the fifth and final episode, PS4 in early 2016 in both retail and downloadable forms. In a recent update to its Kickstarter backers, Camouflaj detailed its plans for the series in the future. This is what it had to say:
“Many of you have asked about Camouflaj’s next project and the future of the République franchise. We’re happy to report that our team of thirty-two are hard at work on numerous projects, including bringing République to additional platforms. It’s always been our vision to put the game in front of as many people as possible, which is why we’re continuing to grow the game’s already long list of supported platforms. Long term, we want to bring the game to the Chinese, Korean, Indian and Middle-Eastern markets.”
“We would also like to expand République to new browser-based platforms and, if NOA [Nintendo of America] supports the idea, the upcoming Nintendo Switch. Throughout all of that, we will continue updating the game on existing platforms, addressing bugs, and adding new features. As much as we’d love to make new episodes, though, we do not have any plans to do so.”
So as well as news that the company is working on a title not directly connected to the existing République experience, the reveal of a Switch release is very intriguing. Hopefully, these plans are rubber stamped by Nintendo. The touchscreen will fit naturally with the gameplay mechanics, that’s for certain.
To find out more, you’re in the right place, too. We had the world exclusive making of feature for République in our first issue of Grab It, which is also our free issue. If you want to know everything there is to know about the game’s origins and the company’s founder, you can read it on iPad here.