When the Callisto protocol was shown during Geoff Kigley’s Summer Games Fest last week, the knee-jerk reaction among fans and observers was that it looked a lot like dead space – the same style and the same UI, even more so. But an action game can be bigger than the classic genre of Whistler: God of War 2018.

Released after a full decade of Dead Space, it has proven to be extremely effective at splitting the gap between open world adventure and more linear action-adventure games. Callisto Protocol is one of the action games that seems to be following its lead, with alternative routes and exploration that seem like the main action game of PlayStation. The apology from fans of Dead Space who are still hurt by the series’ most infamous scenes suggests that Striking Distance Studio’s new project could be more than eye-catching.

‘The ability to play again is going to be very high’

Speaking to IGN at Summer Games Fest 2022, Callisto Protocol Director Glenn Schofield talks about the “beta path” – an alternative route that somehow works similarly to a sidequest in a role-playing game.

“We’ve added beta routes for exploration. We added a lot. And you don’t have to if you don’t want to, but there are a lot of hidden things in the game, “says Schofield. “The more you learn about the story, the more you learn about the characters. Like, each character has a story that you can draw for them. So I think this game will have a lot more replay potential than Dead Space.”

Like God of War 2018, it looks like the Callisto protocol will generally follow a linear narrative route, but there will be plenty of alternative content for curious players who want more. Schofield says he doesn’t expect players to find all beta routes on their playthrough, meaning they will have plenty of extra content and story beats if they choose to play again via The Callisto protocol.

You don’t have to [optional paths] If you do not want to, but there are many hidden things in the game.

Callisto protocol may be more straightforward than the god of war. Sony’s game features hidden routes that lead to unique loot; Secret bosses like Valkyries and a simple search system. In the Callisto protocol, you are more likely to be at the door leading to an unexpected path towards alternative content. It may be less complicated, but Schofield suggests there will be more of these routes.

Either way, this is a departure from the more linear and straightforward design of the original Dead Space, which was strongly suggested by Event Horizon and Resident Evil 4 (Schofield says he alternately called Dead Space “Resident Evil 4 in Space” and “Resident Evil”). 4 Where you can walk while shooting. ”) It speaks to the overall evolution of action games, which are now expected to be carnivorous, open-ended adventures that justify their price.

To that end, Schofield says the Callisto protocol will not use guidelines at this time, although he says it was “great” for dead space. He hopes the decision will sharpen the fears of the Callisto protocol by misleading players.

“I want to get you some, ‘Where am I?’ Because it’s not that hard to get through, but I think you should go, ‘Hey shoot, I’m here!’… I don’t think people will really lose, because we’re trying to be smart. About that, but I think the evolution of this game is that we can’t tell you exactly where to go. We’re going to give you warnings, and similar stuff. “

Callisto Protocol Gameplay Summer Game Fest 2022

Venturing across the Dead Planet

After the establishment of Striking Distance Studio – Callisto Protocol has been evolving since the beginning of 2020. His team includes several Dead Space veterans, including Steve Papautis, the former executive creator of Dead Space, the promoter of Dead Space 2’s squeaky-right eye view, which Schofield describes as his “right-handed man.”

Schofield has always had a special fondness for Dead Space, which has been fueled by meteor showers of closed visceral games. When Striking Distance first announced The Callisto Protocol, many assumed that Schofield was essentially a remake of Dead Space – a hypothesis reinforced by the recent Summer Games Fest demo, which apparently seemed to return straight to Ishimura.

In the demo, Jacob fights zombies (or “biophases”), explores claustrophobic corridors, and dies in some really horrible ways. So far, so dead space. But Schofield says the differences will become apparent when the Callisto protocol emerges from that corridor.

“[T]Its atmosphere, they are all different. You have to think about how to get through it, “says Schofield. “Outside, there’s an area where you’re in,” I don’t know which way to go. It’s a blizzard. That’s it … you have to find your way, you have to lose a little bit, that kind of thing. And it’s part of a little scary. That fear is different, right? “

He goes on to say, “I think different environments allow different kinds of fears, but they allow different ways for enemies to come in front of you and different kinds of battles for you. We tried to confuse you as much as possible and make each area unique. “

The picture that begins to emerge is of a horror game that clearly has the DNA of Dead Space, but otherwise it takes its hints from more modern games. When Dead Space was released in 2008, Resident Evil 4 was just three years old. Third Person Action-Adventure Games felt relatively new. Like the necromorphs in the original game, third-person shooters have evolved admirably since then, and with its more open design, the Callisto protocol is evolving with it.

“I think you’ll go there and play a game, maybe think of Dead Space, but when you’re done, it’s a different story, a different character, a different world, we have a different way of telling the story. , We go very deep into the story. The battle is different, the enemies are different, “Schofield concludes.

“I can’t see people going, ‘Oh, that’s Dead Space 4.’ I can’t. “

We’ll be able to see it soon when the Callisto protocol launches on December 2 on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X | S, Xbox One, and PC. You can check out our Summer of Gaming 2022 coverage here with all the announcements from Weekend’s Xbox + Bethesda Showcase.

Cat Bailey is a senior news editor at IGN and co-host of Nintendo Voice Chat. Have a tip? Send her a DM on @the_katbot.