With a trailer rushed in time to make Sony’s press conference at Gamescom in August, Hellblade was one of the biggest (and nicest) surprises of the year. Focused on a woman warrior named Senua, Hellblade looks to infuse Celtic and Viking mythology with the stellar combat and stories that we’ve come to expect from developer Ninja Theory (who also worked on Heavenly Sword and DmC: Devil May Cry). We also know that Hellblade will be a timed PS4 exclusive and now, Ninja Theory have finally revealed why they decided to bring Hellblade to Sony’s console first.
Why Hellblade is a PS4 Exclusive
The information comes from the Official PlayStation Magazine UK’s Christmas issue (OPM Issue #104), with the magazine making Hellblade their cover game.
In the massive 12 page feature on the in-development title, there’s a snippet of conversation in which writer Matthew Pellett asks Dominic Matthews, Nina Theory’s Product Development Manager, why Hellblade is coming to PS4 before any other platform:
“As a small development team we have to be careful about which platform we focus on. PlayStation offers us a good opportunity to realise the game in a way that we really want to. There’s also something nice about the partnership between Sony and Ninja Theory – there is heritage there with [PS3 exclusive] Heavenly Sword, so I think getting that team back together…there’s something nice about that.”
With Hellblade, Ninja Theory are testing out ‘independent triple A’ which they say can change the gaming industry. Rather than being a small scale indie or a triple A blockbuster with a giant budget, independent triple A games will have triple A production values on an indie budget.
There are massive risks with that even if Hellblade only needs to sell around 200,000 to 300,000 copies in order to be a ‘success’. That PS4 has been chosen as the testing ground for the model reflects highly on Sony’s indie policies but whether this pays off or not will have to be seen.
We’ll have lots more on Hellblade in the new year so keep checking J Station X for that!