We Happy Few emerged a year ago on Xbox One as a timed exclusive, catching the eyes of gamers everywhere for its Bioshock-like creepy aesthetic, and intriguing premise.
You see, in We Happy Few, nothing is as it seems. All of the game's citizens are high on a powerful antidepressant that turns the game's post-apocalyptic dystopia into a colorful land of rich abundance. At the start of the game, you begin to see the world for what it really is, and you embark on a dangerous, sandbox survival mission to escape the twisted town of Wellington Wells.
We Happy Few hit Game Preview on Xbox One initially, and its general lack of polish and features saw it fade away fairly quickly. Its initial trailer was perhaps a little too promising. It's quite possible that the Alpha state of the game took players by surprise, leading to disappointment.
But now you can take a joy pill and join me for some rather amazing-sounding news.
The future of We Happy Few
Gearbox, best known for Borderlands, is now involved with the project, lending their backing to bring the game to retail on April 13, 2018. We Happy Few will also pick up even more updates to further flesh out its gameplay (which by the way, has improved considerably since launch), including three playable characters, 250 unique encounters, and a full-length story campaign.
Despite the partnership with Gearbox, We Happy Few will remain the property of Compulsion Games, which brought the project to life from an initial round on Kickstarter. The game will remain Xbox Play Anywhere across Windows 10 and Xbox One, and it will also hit Steam and PlayStation 4 (PS4).
The three protagonists will have unique abilities, stories, and "dark secrets," according to Compulsion Games, each with their own reasons for wanting to escape the British dystopia. The character's storylines sound as though they overlap in some ways, as they hunt for freedom and the truth behind Wellington Wells.
Compulsion Games Studio Head Guillaume Provost praised the partnership with Gearbox, emphasizing the goal to deliver the game Compulsion fans expect:
Additionally, We Happy Few will pick up another update on Game Preview and Early Access today, dubbed the "Life in Technicolour" update. With an improved UI, upgraded AI, new joy effects, "and more," the update marks the last feature pack Alpha testers will see ahead of the game's full launch, as Compulsion shifts development towards finishing the game.
We Happy Few will go all the way up to $59.99 for its retail launch, which should give you a good indication of the quality and depth Compulsion is gunning for. Those who preorder the game will get early access to the Alpha client, while Windows 10 Store customers will get early access later this fall. PC and Xbox One players who own the game already should receive the full game on April 13, 2018, for free. There will also be a Collector's Edition, priced at $149.99, full of We Happy Few-themed swag.
As a fan of survival games, I was incredibly excited about We Happy Few initially. But like many Early Access games, my interest waned pretty quickly, as the reality of Alpha testing reared its ugly, buggy head. To hear that it could achieve its full potential with Gearbox's backing is certainly welcome news. Hopefully, We Happy Few can claw its way back into the spotlight and become a pleasant experience without magical happy drugs.
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Jez Corden is a Senior Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!
I remember people critisising the survival part of 'we happy few" for being too demanding and distracting . I hope they balanced it .
They have changed a massive amount. if you haven't played in a while go back and check it out.
i am one of the suckers who fell for the trailer. Bought it and sorely disappointed it revolved around resource collection/management more than anything
Maybe I will have to try it out again. It has been awhile since I have played with it.
I can't believe people are still talking about the Game Preview as if it is the full game. You bought into early access for goodness sake! There have been numerous updates and developments in the last year including balancing, mechanic tweaks and additional missions. The devs have gone to great lengths to ensure the the main game and storyline are NOT in the game preview so we can all experience the full game on release. Please be clear about the differences between what you may have played before, what you can play now and what you will be able to play on release.
Microsoft should of kept it an exclusive.
It was NEVER an exclusive.
I didn't realise this was news, I just assumed based on the initial opening scene that the game would get a campaign, it certainly lends itself to having one.
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