After a less than ideal frolic through early access, pill-popping survival stealth game, We Happy Few, has been penciled in for a release on August 10th for PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Developer Compulsion Games, recently acquired by Microsoft, made the announcement earlier this week at E3.
Take on the role of three rather ordinary, yet different characters whose stories weave in and out of each other as they confront the delusional denial of the citizens of Wellington Wells. Set in 1964, the city is defined by its inordinately happy populace, who maintain their nauseating levels of glee thanks to Joy. This magic pill renders the war torn landscape of a city tethering on the edge of chaos, drab decors, brutal policing, and poverty into a colorful dystopian retro-futuristic illusion. Unfortunately, they don’t take kindly to those who fail to take their medicine and are eager to chase down those who don’t sport the impish smile of a regular Joy guzzler.
Our three heroes must blend into this environment by any means necessary through stealth and occasional drug abuse to uncover what led to a army of druggies roaming the streets of Wellington Wells and other secrets from the city’s past.
The game went through a successful bout of Kickstarter funding, then spent a couple of years in the murky waters of early access. Updates and improvements were few and far between, though the game did slowly take shape. Earlier this year, Compulsion Games removed the game from early access in preparation for a full release. With the game fully fleshed out and ready for release, I’m intrigued to see what We Happy Few has to offer gamers.
We know We Happy Few incorporates survival crafting, social chameleon-ism, and combat. Play in permadeath mode, make a wrong move and death ships you back to the title screen. The idea is for the game to be re-playable with every fresh save loading a procedural-generated, unseen city to sneak around in. The aesthetic is reminiscent of Bioshock brushed over with LCD-induced coloration and distinctly 1960s patterns.
We Happy Few can be pre-ordered from all the usual outlets, including a Time Capsule edition with a nice selection of game-related goodies. The E3 announcement also included a release trailer giving some fresh story details, which you can sample below.