Runic Games, the acclaimed indie developer behind Torchlight and Torchlight II, have announced a release date of September 26th for their next title, Hob. Hob marks a bit of a departure from the studio’s previous titles, dropping the hack, slash, and loot formula of Torchlight for what the developer calls “putting our own spin and style on the puzzle-platformer genre.” To get an idea of what Hob is all about, you can check out the new trailer for the game below.
When we previewed Hob at PAX East last year, our author was impressed by the game’s striking visual style and environmental storytelling, drawing comparisons to Legend of Zelda and Journey. According to this post on the PlayStation blog, these are two aspects of Hob that the developer is keen to highlight. One of the most visually impressive parts of the game that has been shown so far is the “land raising” mechanic and the post elaborates on that, confirming that the whole world of Hob is made up in this way and many zones and secrets will be inaccessible until the land is raised or activated.
The post from the Runic team also talks about ambient storytelling through the placement of upgrades, saying that “Where you find these items may be just as intriguing as how.” Another interesting point to come out of the PlayStation blog post is that the life inhabiting the world of Hob is neither good nor evil but instead is made up of creatures striving to survive the Darwinian struggles of their own ecosystem. Some creatures may try to eat you, others may befriend you, presumably leaving the player to decide whether they want to play the apex predator.
The announcement, from Runic Games’ blog, went on to detail pre-order bonuses for the PC and PlayStation 4 versions of the game, as well as a trophy-naming competition that gave fans a chance to win a copy of the game, among other prizes. Pre-orders are currently available at 10% off the launch price of $19.99, and if you want to check out Runic’s previous games, you can pick up the Runic Games Collection through Steam or GOG, featuring Torchlight I & II and Hob, for $24.99 up until September 26th.
Are you looking forward to the Hob release date of September 26th? What do you think of Runic Games’ decision to try their hand at a puzzle platformer, are you pleased to see them take a step in a new direction or worried about getting withdrawal symptoms without loot drops? Let us know down in the comments!