Man of Medan: How the Creators of Till Daybreak Are Stepping Up Their Recreation

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Since its 2015 launch, teen-horror homage Till Daybreak has constructed a legion of followers, hooked on its branching narrative, memorable characters and ruthlessly environment friendly scares. Developer Supermassive has dipped its toes again into horror on a few events since — with spin-offs Till Daybreak: Rush of Blood and PS VR prequel The Inpatient — however now, with upcoming chiller Man of Medan, it’s making a full-bodied return to the style.

Taking the Till Daybreak template and stretching it in some fascinating new instructions, it’s shaping as much as be a really satisfying religious successor to the studio’s breakout hit. Forward of its launch on August 30, we sat down with Supermassive CEO and the sport’s Government Producer, Pete Samuels, to search out out why followers ought to begin salivating.

It’s the primary in a collection of intense, standalone horror tales

Man of Medan is the primary entry in The Darkish Photos Anthology, a collection of cinematic horror video games influenced by actual world legends and occasions. Every recreation incorporates a brand-new story, setting and characters, constructing on the identical high-stakes branching narrative system established in Till Daybreak.

“Man of Medan takes place the South Pacific and sees five friends set sail on a holiday diving trip,” explains Samuels. “With a rumored WWII wreck to search out, and loads of on-deck partying available, our group prepare for what needs to be the journey of a lifetime. Because the day unfolds, and a storm rolls in, their journey quickly modifications into one thing rather more sinister.

“People should expect the kind of tension and fear that many associate with Until Dawn, and with more significant branching that we’ve ever done before. All the characters can live or die!”

The Till Daybreak staff is concerned

Man of Medan could be very a lot minimize from the identical fabric as Till Daybreak, with key expertise from that staff on the wheel. Horror followers are in secure arms. “Most of the Directors are the same, and about half of the team in total. We’re also using many of the same creative partners,” confirms Samuels.

The branching narrative is way larger than in Till Daybreak

As in Till Daybreak, branching narrative is the sport’s spine. All the recreation’s key character reside or die relying on the choices that you simply make as a participant, and the knowledge you uncover. This time nevertheless, Supermassive has taken issues even additional.

“There are scenes that only exist on specific narrative paths; different combinations of survivors possible before the final scenes; more significant and in some ways more surprising consequences of ‘mismanaging’ relationships; and endings that vary significantly depending on the paths you take,” explains Samuels. “Man of Medan has the most branching and possible outcomes of any of our games to date. There are many ways to attempt to quantify this, but here’s just one.”

“In Until Dawn there were 38 death scenes for the characters and you could see up to 10 on a single playthrough. In Man of Medan there are 69, and the most you are likely to see on a single playthrough would be nine. That means you’d need to play the game a minimum of nine times just to see all of the death scenes, let alone all of the other possible story events.”

It’s not limiting itself to at least one horror sub-genre

Whereas Till Daybreak was an unabashed tip-of-the-hat to the teenager slasher hits of the ‘80s and ‘90s, Man of Medan attracts on a wider vary of horror influences.

“Man of Medan certainly has some similar touchpoints, but also some that you’d recognize from the home invasion subgenre, and some much more supernatural — even sci-fi horror,” says Samuels. “It certainly feels more contemporary in its influences we think and, of course, it’s the first in an anthology. The second, third and fourth are quite different in their influences.”

Supermassive has pulled collectively one other gifted solid

A key think about Till Daybreak’s success was the way it leaned on a gifted solid of actors to actually promote the sport’s pulpy, tongue-in-cheek dialogue — amongst them, breakout Heroes star Hayden Panettiere and a pre-Mr. Robotic/Bohemian Rhapsody Rami Malek.

With Man of Medan, the studio has put collectively one other spectacular roster of Hollywood expertise, together with Shawn Ashmore (X-Males, The Following) taking part in Conrad and Ayisha Issa (Shadowhunters, Heat Our bodies, Immortals) voicing Fliss.

It’s actually pushing the PS4 {hardware}

Till Daybreak was an actual looker, harnessing Guerrilla Video games’ Decima Engine to make its darkish, atmospheric places actually pop. Man of Medan’s visuals are each bit its equal. “We’ve moved to Unreal Engine now, and our team have built some awesome systems and tools that, very specifically, support what we do and the look that we want,” explains Samuels. “We’ll be supporting 4K resolution and HDR for compatible systems.”

The characters will likely be relatable

Making a horror recreation that’s genuinely scary is a uncommon ability, and one thing that few titles efficiently pull off. Supermassive’s secret sauce? Relatable characters that you simply imagine in and care about.

“Our brand of horror is about the vulnerability of characters that you care about. Characters that might be just a little like you. They’re largely unarmed and unsuspecting, and are as terrified as you’d be if such events happened to you,” says Samuels. “That’s what effective horror is for us. ‘Real’ people, with believable relationships, subjected to extreme terror.”

It’s the beginning of one thing larger

As already talked about, Man of Medan is the primary installment in a collection of horror titles, dubbed The Darkish Photos Anthology. It’s not episodic — every entry will likely be a standalone story — however they’ll all exist in the identical universe. “There is one character that bridges the anthology. He’s called The Curator and is brilliantly played by Pip Torrens,” teases Samuels.

“We’ve committed ourselves to two games in any 12-month period. The first three are well underway and the fourth and fifth are fairly well advanced from a narrative perspective. We even have our ideas in place for the sixth, seventh and eighth! Across all of these, and others to come, we hope, we’d expect to cover many more of the 39 subgenres of horror we’ve identified! We couldn’t be more excited.”

Man of Medan hits PS4 on August 30.

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