If we can confidently say one thing about Bulletstorm, it's that it will almost definitely have an M-rating. The latest developer diary confirms the suspicion, with the game's lead writer and producer showing that the the colorful cast of characters on hand for their fun-filled shooter will most certainly be aimed at adults. While some have already begun to paint the game as a mindless killfest, the developers are now giving a look at the revenge tale driving the team across a foreign landscape, and the unique personalities that populate the team.
The first looks at the game have shown that People Can Fly are committed to getting the most out of the Unreal Engine, showing off stunning visuals of an alien world. The scenery is merely a backdrop to the real star of the game, the innovative 'Skillshot' system that rewards experience points to players for creatively killing their enemies.
The implementation of the system is an undeniable return to the shooter's arcade roots, and looks to add a lighter and more comedic tone compared to Epic's other franchise, Gears of War. The latest developer diary features Bulletstorm's lead writer Rick Remender and producer Tanya Jessen discussing the plot details of the game, as well as the main characters in protagonist Grayson Hunt's team.
The "colorful" language on display in the game's previous story trailer seem to be a direct result of the team's personality, so the developer diary should be considered NSFW. Unless you happen to work at People Can Fly, that is:
It's hard to not get a little excited about the notion of Epic Games joining forces with People Can Fly to release a game that is obviously more over-the-top in its execution of intense action and creative combat than we're used to. Gears of War is a masterpiece in itself, and a showcase of the Unreal Engine's capabilities, but an injection of humor and color into the drab world of Jacinto is a welcome addition.
Some might be turned off by the game so far, and believe that Bulletstorm will forgo interesting story or mechanics in favor of an excess of violence and graphic content, but Epic's Cliff Bleszinski isn't stupid. In a recent interview, Cliffy made a point of addressing the criticism of his games being overly violent by pointing out that it's their excess that makes them lighthearted. In his mind, the over-the-top violence is one of the best ways to generate humor in an action game, and the looks at Bulletstorm are likely to draw a chuckle or two from fans.
From the dev diary, it seems that Gearbox Software has reason to worry that their upcoming launch of Duke Nukem Forever overshadowed, even if that game is a much larger experience. If both games manage to achieve significant success, then there might suddenly be a brand-new rivalry in the arcade-shooter genre overnight. So far, Bulletstorm has the upper hand by offering players a chance to multiply their creative killing by joining forces with friends, so we wait to see what Gearbox has to unveil.
You can prepare yourself to go head-first into the filthy world of Bulletstorm when it launches on the PS3, PC, and Xbox 360 on February 22, 2011.