Aaru’s Awakening, a 2D, side-scrolling, teleportation-based platformer from Icelandic developer Lumenox, is coming to PS3 and PS4 this summer, the studio announced today.
According to marketing director Johann Ingi Gudjonsson, Aaru’s Awakening began as a school project at the University of Reykjavík some two years ago. Knowing the genre to be “congested,” the team at Lumenox wanted to take a different approach to Aaru’s Awakening, and inspiration from Unreal Tournament’s teleportation gun set them down that particular mechanic’s path.
The end result was granting the playable character the ability to “shoot” his soul of his body and transport his physical self to where the soul shot out to. By default, this mechanic is controlled using the R1 and R2 buttons to shoot/arrive respectively, though Gudjonsson says Aaru’s Awakening allows players to remap controls as they see fit. Gudjonsson also detailed how the Lumenox team knew that Aaru’s Awakening couldn’t set itself apart purely because of teleportation, so through trial and error they introduced double jumps and breakable objects to mesh with their main mechanic.
“The charging ability was not part of our original prototype, but added afterwards to have a faster-paced platformer,” Gudjonsson wrote in a post on the PlayStation Blog. “We wanted to force the player to make a lot of split-second decisions and keep [them] on the edge of [their] seat throughout the experience.”