With only a few weeks to go before the much anticipated release of We Happy Few on August 10th, developer Compulsion Games has unleashed an extended trailer detailing many of the new features it has been working on since the game was pulled from Early Access earlier this year.
Kaleidoscopic and jittery at times, the trailer can be hard to get one’s head around, yet this approach seems in keeping with what We Happy Few has become; a post-utopia carnival of happiness-inducing drugs, a society’s crumbling foundations, and the very human desire to break free from forced oppression at any cost.
The trailer introduces the three playable characters and their interwoven stories. Arthur Hastings is a seemingly ordinary-man vying to escape the dreary confines of Wellington Wells for the downtrodden, yet rebellious Garden District. A professed ‘downer’, Hastings is on a mission to track down his estranged brother.
Next up, we have Sally Boyle, owner of ‘Sally’s Interplanetary Travel Agency’ and a master of experimental chemistry with a penchant for using her brews to incapacitate the authorities of Wellington Wells. Sporting suitably 1960s garbs, she seems to be a perennial thorn in the sides of the city’s force of grinning bobbies.
Finally, there’s ex-mayor Ollie Starkey who, clad in military attire, is an advocate of causing mischief from rooftops and generally spearheading mayhem whenever possible.
From the trailer, it’s clear the three protagonists invoke varying game play features with Hastings having an emphasis on scrambling melee combat, while Boyle sways more towards a stealthy approach, and Starkey relies on high octane explosions and stentorian tactics.
The five-minute-plus trailer also sheds light on the mechanics making up We Happy Few. As expected, the heavy focus on crafting remains to improve weaponry via resource gathering. The weapons on display hint at a whole load of bludgeoning action, but also electricity-assisted batons. Lock picking and stealth are highlighted. as well as environmental manipulation through making the most of Wellington’s technological infrastructure, for better or for worse.
We also get a glimpse of the three pronged skill and upgrade tree including survival, combat, and stealth branches, as well as survival elements such as the need to seek out sustenance. Via a short scene involving a shopkeeper and a quest to retrieve lost records, we get a better understanding of the side-quest format set to feature.
The trailer confirms Compulsion Games decision to shift from a narrative-light open world survival title to a story driven adventure following player feedback during Early Access. As it stands, We Happy Few should have much to offer and I for one can’t wait to delve into its wacky world.