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SCHiM steps out from the shadows next year

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We are happy to announce that Schim is going to be released on PS5 and PS4! Schim is being developed by a team of two: Ewoud van der Werf the lead developer and myself, Nils Slijkerman. I do additional level and game design on Schim. The audio is done by the team of Moonsailor.

In the game you play as a schim, a shadow creature who is trying to get back to the shadow of their person. You’ll travel through ordinary Dutch-inspired locations where you’ll meet other schim and characters you can help and interact with.

SCHiM steps out from the shadows next year

In this trailer we show specific ways of interacting with the world, something we haven’t really shown anywhere else yet! In the different scenes you can see that the schim character interacts with objects. As a player you can activate or interact with a shadow by pressing square while being in the shadow of an object.

With Schim, we want to create a world where the player can explore and experiment with various objects and their shadows. Some of these activatable shadows will be little visual or sound-based elements to discover, while others will be part of the flow of the world and will actually change the situation of the player and the characters in the world.

In our new trailer we have lined up some of these examples. In the second scene, the schim of the player arrives in the scene in the shadow of a duck. The duck, however, notices that there is a cat and won’t continue on. The player of the schim jumps over into the garbage truck and uses the shadow interact button (Square on your DualShock 4 or DualSense controller) on the truck, causing the truck to honk its horn and startle the cat, who promptly runs away so the duck can happily waddle along, creating a way forward for the player.

While this example had a specific solution, we are aiming to allow for multiple paths, interactions, and ways to finish a level. In the second scene with a shadow interact, we see the player hopping in a parking lot of a car dealership. The player jumps into the generator, uses the Square button to interact with the shadow and activates the air dancer. The air dancer inflates and creates a new path for the player to use.

A closer look at the turn-based combat in Sea of Stars

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Sabotage was founded with a clear goal in mind; presenting our own “definitive editions” of the game genres we grew up playing. By combining retro aesthetics and modern design, we shoot for experiences that capture what we loved about games of old while leaving behind the elements we feel might hold them back today.

A closer look at the turn-based combat in Sea of Stars

For our very own turn-based RPG, we started with a few simple guidelines; there would be seamless transitions from navigation to combat, no random encounters, and no grinding. Combat is obviously a big one, so let’s dive a bit deeper.

Actual turn-based

In Sea of Stars combat is purely turn-based without any time bars, avoiding pressure in order to let the player make decisions at their own pace instead. Each of the six playable characters come with a small kit of four spells/skills with differing damage types and patterns, which can be combined with other characters’ moves.

MP has a very low cap but regenerates when using normal attacks, creating a flow where using magic in a regular fight is expected, while the big heavy hitter spells have to be paced with some normal attacks when fighting a boss.

No random encounters means every fight is designed manually to offer a unique pattern of enemies that can be analyzed and optimized by the savvy Solstice Warrior, and other combat features come together into a dance between utility and damage. 

Locks

Enemies that mount spells or special skills will display a bar with locks, each with an icon of a certain damage type. Breaking locks will weaken the upcoming move, while breaking all of them will cancel it altogether.

Each of the six playable characters can dish out damage efficiently in one or two of the types, further supported by their skill/spell kit which offers pattern variations (like AoE or multi-hit).