I always keep a keen interest for adaptations and it seems that Frogwares intrigued my interest once again. In addition to transferring literature universes to video games, which is far more demanding than adaptations from other media, like for example from film or comics, this time they are transferring Lovecraft’s world!
More specifically, after their Sherlock Holmes’ series, now they are working on The Sinking City: A Lovecraft-inspired Open Investigation Thriller .
A video game based on Lovecraft’s work is intriguing per se, but on the top of that, Frogwares, states that the game will be an open world, open investigation third person adventure game, founded on… “non-linear storytelling as well as our core gameplay mechanic – open investigation”. My first honest reaction is: Wow! It really sounds impressive.
The game, as described in the company’s page:
“…takes place in the fictional city of Oakmont, Massachusetts, set in the famous American Roaring Twenties. It’s a very distinct and often romanticized period of time in the U.S. history: economic growth, rise of consumerism, jazz, prohibition, gangsters and ethnic conflicts. Besides that, Oakmont is a very strange place with its fair share of dark and sinister secrets. The city has been mostly secluded from the mainland since its very foundation in the 17 century. Local inhabitants are really not fond of strangers, and are protective of their rules and traditions.
Following the legacy of Vikings and Indians, who lived in these lands before, they practice often shocking religious rituals and ceremonies. Their isolation and distrust of outlanders are only reinforced by the ongoing calamity that is tearing the city apart. Most streets in Oakmont are buried beneath a mysterious flood that came as if out of nowhere. The disaster has claimed too many lives already, highlighting the local government’s inability to deal with the situation.
However, the dire humanitarian crisis is not the only problem here. Something dreadful came with the flood. Frightening monsters are now roaming the streets of Oakmont, plunging the city into madness and dismay. Locals also say they can constantly feel the presence of something far more alarming – a great, incomprehensible force that is slowly driving everyone mad….”
Another thing that I am also looking forward to see is how the transfer of the Sherlock Holmes’ series game mechanics to the The Sinking City’s open universe will function. I believe that there are a lot of things in many levels that the developers have to address, as the games have intrinsic differences. Quoting Frogwares:
“Insanity is a big part of the Lovecraftian universe. The famous author wrote about things we could never understand and explain, and that would drive us mad. Sherlock Holmes is all about the opposite – absolute rationality and clarity of the mind. When the two conflicting approaches blend together, The Sinking City appears”.
Unfortunately, even though I searched thoroughly, the only hint of a release date is the year: 2018. So, despite of my enthusiasm, I will have to wait a bit more, in order to play, analyze and write about the game.
As I like both Lovecraft and video games, I hope that Frogwares will provide us a game worth playing, discussing and writing about, for a long time!