Movie tie-ins rarely result in great video games but the recent unveil of a new Planet of the Apes title has caught our interest. Not unlike a Telltale spin-off, the new Planet of the Apes: Last Frontier will take a much more cinematic approach to gameplay than your traditional action game. Set for release on all major consoles later this year, the new standalone cinematic adventure might be one of the most courageous attempts at a medium blending, interactive experience we have seen thus far.
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While the game takes place between the events in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and 2017’s War for the Planet of the Apes, this is indeed a completely standalone experience. It stars a new cast of characters, on both the ape and human side of things, allowing newcomers Imaginati to offer up a load of player choice along the way.
Ok let’s get one thing clear here. This is very much not a traditional video game, in fact it sounds a lot more like an interactive movie than anything else. There is no inventory or player exploration. There isn’t even any puzzles or traditional combat. This is a game about morality and player choice.
The game runs about as long as a feature film with as much replay value built-in as possible. You will never directly take control of any particular character, but rather make a series of choices as to what will take place in any given scene. Developer Imaginati hopes to have players interacting with the experience every 15 or 20 seconds across the entire 2 to 3 hour playtime. While it may not be for everyone, those in to the Telltale like experiences will certainly appreciate the effort here.
Here’s more from the developers courtesy of IGN:
The pace of the storytelling is just super-intense compared to any of these other games…There’s no opening and closing drawers, no searching through inventories. It’s all about you making choices that affect relationships with other characters and, in the long term, how those relationships play out, and how the story plays out. It’s a creative risk, but when we talked to everyone on the team, they really believed in it. It would have been very easy for us to copy what had gone before.
The game is being published by the the studio partially responsible for the performance capture in the films. Imaginarium is going for a photorealistic approach here and due to the way the game is played, are able to squeeze out every last bit of power for visuals. Judging by some of the early press materials and trailer, it looks like they are doing a great job on that front:
Planet of the Apes: Last Frontier is set for release on the fall on PS4, Xbox One and PC.