At PAX West 2023, Paradox Interactive finally delivered the long-awaited news on Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2.
Following the replacement of Hardsuit Labs as the developer, British studio The Chinese Room has been working on the game, which is now scheduled for a Fall 2024 launch window on PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series S|X.
Of course, Bloodlines 2 has received numerous delays; it was originally due to launch in late 2020. However, speaking to Digital Trends, Sean Greaney (Vice President of the World of Darkness IP at Paradox) expressed confidence in the Fall 2024 target window as the game has already surpassed its Alpha development stage.
If we weren’t confident in the new release window, we wouldn’t be starting the new marketing campaign. There’s a reason we haven’t been out there communicating and marketing this title for a while. We wanted The Chinese Room to have the opportunity to get this baby, grow it with some uninterrupted development time, and clear alpha. Now that we’re through alpha, it’s time to start talking to our fans.
Regarding the split with Hardsuit Labs and the work they did on Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2, Greaney said:
Hardsuit Labs is a great studio, and they did a lot of good work on this project. We just had a very different vision for the final product, and we couldn’t align on that vision. And so, the right thing to do was to end the collaboration and find a studio that shared that vision.
The work that had been done on the game was very important for getting us to a certain point, so the themes, Seattle as the setting, and a significant degree of the art and character art has been carried over.
The last statement includes particularly relevant information when assessing Paradox’s confidence. Making a triple-A action RPG in just three years from scratch would have been a daunting task for anyone, but with a lot of art already done, The Chinese Room certainly got a solid headstart.
Bloodlines 2 is still a first-person game set in Seattle and based on the fifth edition of the Vampire The Masquerade RPG, but there have been many changes, too. For starters, the main character is no longer a newly embraced ‘Thin Blood’ but rather an Elder vampire who suddenly awakens after a long time spent in torpor.
The Chinese Room also opted to upgrade from Unreal Engine 4 to Unreal Engine 5, which means Bloodlines 2 may take advantage of built-in features like Lumen and Nanite. It is unclear whether ray tracing and NVIDIA DLSS support will still be included as originally planned.
The developers will release information on every playable clan before the end of 2023, with the gameplay reveal scheduled for January 2024. Until then, stay tuned.
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