At the Game Awards 2019, Phil Spencer surprised the world by announcing the next Xbox console and a new Ninja Theory game, Senua's Saga: Hellblade II. This is our first look at a true next-generation title. Technically, Halo Infinite gave us footage of a game running on next-generation Xbox hardware (or on a PC with ballpark specs) but Senua's Sacrifice: Hellblade II is the first Xbox Game Studios title explicitly being designed from the ground-up for the Xbox Series X.
Senua's Saga: Hellblade II story
In the first game, Senua went on a journey into Hel and confronted all sorts of mythical beasts and deities, including the fire giant Surt and the God of Illusion, Valravn. She also made peace with the "darkness" inside her; the voices Ninja Theory has explicitly confirmed were designed around modern-day descriptions of psychosis. While we don't know much about the story of the sequel so far, it appears to be taking an even darker tone, delving into ideas of Pict and Nord rituals and sacrifice.
Creative Director Tameem Antoniades has shared that Senua's Saga: Hellblade II takes the foundation of the first game and builds on it, to explore how madness and suffering shape myths, gods and religion. Whatever else the story ends up dealing with, Ninja Theory is consulting mental health professionals as part of The Insight Project, developing games around understanding mental illness. You can check out the reveal trailer from the Game Awards below.
Senua's Saga: Hellblade II gameplay and features
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice was a third-person game with combat and puzzles. We have every reason to expect that the sequel will be very similar; however, it likely has a far larger budget, which could mean more complicated combat, bigger set pieces, and a larger game. Here's what we know right now.
- This is a different team at Ninja Theory than the one under Rahni Tucker developing Bleeding Edge.
- The team is around twice the size of the team that worked on the first game, around 40 developers instead of 20.
- Melina Juergens is reprising her role as Senua, providing some truly incredible performance capture.
- Footage for the trailer was captured in-engine.
- Ninja Theory was already planning ideas for Hellblade II when Microsoft acquired the studio.
- The game is being developed using Unreal Engine 5.
- Ninja Theory is working with the band Heilung for the soundtrack.
- Heilung's music can be heard in the reveal trailer for the game, the song is called In Maidjan.
- Senua's Saga: Hellblade II will be included in Xbox Game Pass, like all Xbox Game Studios games.
We recently did a trailer deep dive digging for further possible details. Check that out over here.
Phewww..News is finally out: Hellblade 2 Senua’s Saga is officially in the making! ⚔️ Thanks to “Heilung” for allowing me to perform your song 💓 And thanks to our amazing Team at @NinjaTheory and everyone else who was involved in making this Trailer happen 🙏 #Hellblade2— Melina Juergens (@JuergensMelina) December 14, 2019
Is Senua's Saga: Hellblade II coming to PlayStation 4?
No, Senua's Saga: Hellblade II will be exclusive to the Xbox ecosystem. Ninja Theory was acquired by Microsoft in 2018 at part of a push for Xbox to develop more in-house exclusive titles. As a result, all of their games post-acquisition are being developed for Xbox. Additionally, when Phil Spencer presented the Xbox Series X at the Game Awards 2019, he stated that the fifteen studios at Xbox Game Studios were working on the "largest and most creatively diverse lineup of exclusive games in our history." It's clear that Senua's Saga: Hellblade II is meant to be one of those titles. Aaron Greenberg, General Manager of Marketing at Xbox, has also confirmed it is being exclusively developed for Xbox and PC.
Will Senua's Saga: Hellblade II be on Xbox One?
When Phil Spencer presented the Xbox Series X at the Game Awards 2019, right before the trailer Senua's Saga: Hellblade II, he noted that the game being shown was early in development for the Xbox Series X. However, we're unsure if that means it won't be coming to the original console. We've reached out to Microsoft for a comment.
The official press release and all the marketing materials only mention the Xbox Series X. It will undoubtedly come to PC, though, as all Xbox Game Studios titles arrive on PC as well.
Is Senua's Saga: Hellblade II coming to PC?
Yes, all Xbox Game Studios titles come to PC as well as console. Xbox Game Studios games are available on Windows 10 through Game Pass for PC, as well as being made available on Steam. Aaron Greenberg has also confirmed that Senua's Saga: Hellblade II is coming to PC as well as Xbox.
When is the release date for Senua's Saga: Hellblade II?
There's no release date right now, or even a release window. At the Game Awards 2019, Phil Spencer noted that the title was early in development, so you shouldn't expect it as a launch title for Xbox Series X, or even shortly after launch. We'll be sure to provide updates on any official release date as soon as that information is available.
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