Well, this was unexpected. It seemed like if any new game was going to be announced for the Nintendo Switch it would be during the January 12th event, but of course not every studio may have to hold to that. As an example, we know Ubisoft announced Just Dance 2017 for the platform and Dragon Quest X has been confirmed previously. However, in both of those cases we haven’t seen the titles running on the system and neither of those titles are exclusive.
That is what makes today’s announcement by Any Arts Production interesting, as it is a Switch exclusive that Nintendo themselves appears to be backing (not too unsimilar to the way they are the reason Bayonetta 2 and Devil’s Third happened). Today, Seasons of Heaven was unveiled with some screenshots and art by French outlet GameBlog, with an interview and gameplay footage coming next week. The game itself looks absolutely stunning:
So what exactly is this game about? Here’s a tease:
One of America’s great authors, Louis L’Amour once said, “There will come a time when you believe that everything is finished. Yet, that will be the beginning.” In Seasons of Heaven that is exactly what a small group of people who find themselves survivors of the greatest purge every known will ultimately come to realize. In their struggles to survive on a stripped and barren earth, they will learn that humans across the world literally died as a result of their own careless actions. Centuries of lying waste to the very land that sustained them was what would kill them in the end. The animals would be killed and eaten into extinction. The water needed to sustain all life would be polluted until it was undrinkable, and the air would be filled with waste that would suffocate the oxygen that was vital to their survival and the survival of everything else on earth. As the survivors learn to survive in a whole new world they will have to remember that the very things that gave their fellow humans a sense of superiority and even omnipotence were what had killed them in the end. Seasons of Heaven will take you from deep inside of a mystical forest at the beginning of time all the way through to the twenty-first century and the fall of civilization. It will take you on a journey with Yann, a young boy with Asperger’s syndrome and his faithful companion, Ani, a French bulldog who Yann is able to communicate with through telepathy. As you follow along on their journey you’ll have the opportunity to meet the rest of the major players and bear witness to the enlightenment of some and the demise of others. This story will allow you to experience the awe of discovering the most beautiful, magical place that ever existed while at the same time staying only one step ahead of the dark and vile underbelly of the human race.
Humanity wiped itself out. A journey about a young boy with Asperger’s syndrome. Sign me up! Some users on NeaGaf are claiming this game was originally pitched to some pretty big companies, such as EA, though none of them picked up the title and the studio itself is a pretty small team. Obviously given the studio has announced it is a Switch exclusive, that means Nintendo did pick up the title. Still can’t believe this game is real? Here’s a shot of the game being played on a TV:
Unfortunately, we can’t see if it is being played on a PC or a Switch dev unit (and if it was a dev unit, it’s doubtful they are allowed to show that off anyways). We can tell the person playing is doing so with a wired controller, though that is not unusual for a dev unit. What is undeniable however is the initial screenshots seem to be showing off a 21:9 aspect ration, while naturally the image above is showing off a typical 720p or 1080p resolution. Thus we don’t know what can be taken away from those screenshots in terms of the final product.
The last screenshot is interesting though, as it includes black bars, suggesting the game may have some sort of photomode allowing you get take screenshots of a grander vista type move, not too unsimilar to the way some PlayStation 4 games let you do it. So, there is some evidence to suggest this may be footage of the game on a Switch as well.
It’s hard to make a determination one way or another. However, as noted earlier we’ll likely find out next week in a new interview with some exclusive gameplay. One thing is for certain – if the final version of the game looks anything like this (and runs well too boot), the Switch is certainly capable of current generation goodness, as this is the most visually intensive game we have seen for the system yet. They also released a couple pieces of art:
Next week can’t come soon enough.