A WAY OUT

De­vel­oper Haze­light Stu­dios Pub­lisher Elec­tronic Arts For­mat PC, PS4, Xbox One Re­lease 2018

EDGE - - MULTIFORMAT+PC@E3 -

From the looks of the re­veal trailer and the sounds of the ti­tle,

A Way Out is a two-player co-op Prison Break sim­u­la­tor. But in our demo, jail­bird lead char­ac­ters Leo and Vin­cent have long flown the clink and are wan­der­ing about a petrol sta­tion they’re plan­ning to rob. On one half of the split screen, the player con­trol­ling Leo de­cides to warn a cus­tomer away and en­ters a cutscene con­ver­sa­tion. Vin­cent strolls past in re­al­time in Leo’s back­ground, sab­o­tag­ing the phone in view on his screen to pre­vent any in­con­ve­nient out­go­ing calls.

We can’t help but think of a David Cage game, with its fo­cus on choice, con­se­quence and gen­tly generic ac­tion scenes. But the two-player en­try re­quire­ment – prefer­ably lo­cal, we’re told by di­rec­tor Josef Fares – is a bold move in an era of on­line- only block­busters. While the finer de­tails lack the el­e­gance af­forded by Quan­tic Dream’s tech­no­log­i­cal clout (fa­cial an­i­ma­tion veers to­wards the un­canny), the award-win­ning di­rec­tor’s cin­e­matic vi­sion wins out. On a lap­top, we’re shown in-progress game­play footage of a hos­pi­tal chase. The cam­era sweeps in one con­tin­u­ous shot through vents and around cor­ri­dor cor­ners be­fore the full screen view lands on the other char­ac­ter, and it’s player two’s turn to run.

Whether the sud­den player switches will han­dle as smoothly in open play as they do in Fares’ footage is an­other mat­ter. Then again, Fares was the man be­hind the in­ven­tive PS3 ad­ven­ture Broth­ers: A Tale Of Two Sons – hope­fully A Way

Out will be as tech­ni­cally solid as it is con­cep­tu­ally in­trigu­ing.

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