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June 2024

Mars 2120

Platform(s): Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Genre: Platformer
Publisher: QUByte Interactive
Developer: QUByte Interactive
Release Date: Second half of 2024

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'Mars 2120' Goes Gold, Launch Planned For Second Half Of 2024

by Rainier on May 28, 2024 @ 10:28 a.m. PDT

Mars 2120 is a 2.5D side-scrolling action/adventure Metroidvania in which you take control of Lt. Anna “Charlotte” Right in order to find out what happened to the Colony.

In the 22nd Century, mankind has developed the technology that made manned missions to other planets a reality. Following these developments, the UN-led a treaty, signed by governments all over the globe, to start investments on building Colonies on our nearest planets as means of addressing the issues with overpopulation and lack of natural resources on Earth.

The treaty was a success and the program, codenamed Project: Colonies, produced inhabited colonies in several planets, the first of which Project: Mars, followed by Project: Venus and Project: Jupiter.

After going unresponsive for several weeks, the First Colony sends a distress signal to the UN on Earth which, in response, sends a group of Enhanced Elite Space Marines, led by Lt. Anna “Charlotte” Right, to identify the source of the signal and find out what happened to the Colony.

Inspired by the great hallmarks of the Metroidvania subgenre (such as Super Metroid, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Guacamelee!), players make use of their enhanced abilities to traverse the large interconnected world of the Colony while fighting fierce enemies and challenging bosses with both melee and long-range combat techniques.

Inspired by the classics of the genre and many references taken from the science fiction universe of books, films and games, the metroidvania MARS 2120 is the most ambitious project of the Brazilian independent studio QUByte Interactive.

The game was developed, from its very first draft, over the course of five years by a team of just six people who are passionate about the exploration, mystery and adventure that the iconic metroidvanias have brought to players over time. The result is a declaration of love for the genre by a team that grew up playing and learning about it.

In addition, MARS 2120 also proved to be a milestone for the studio itself in an effort to learn and work, for the first time, with the UNREAL engine.

The size of the project and its implicit significance for a studio used to working on smaller, less complex projects on a day-to-day basis, due to the effort and challenge, ended up earning a documentary about the development process. The documentary “Journey to Mars” will be unveiled in June and already has a teaser released. In it, the team talks about the inspirations for the game, the challenges and the paths they took to try to make a fair and beautiful tribute to the beloved metroidvania genre.

At the end of May, the studio finally received approval for the final build on the last pending platform, the Nintendo Switch, one of those that required the most optimization in order to provide a gaming experience without any performance problems on Nintendo's handheld.

QUByte Interactive is looking to bring an experience that will reflect most of the greatest characteristics in a Metroidvania game. The exploration and map knowledge will be crucial in Mars 2120, such as unlocking new abilities, powers and upgrades in order to face the next challenge.

Powered by the Unreal Engine 4, Mars 2120 features variuos unique aspects, one of them being the melee combat alongside the ranged. The player will be able to perform combos, combining different moves, powers and abilities. Skills and moves may affect different  enemies in different ways. Each enemy and boss requires the player to know which approach will work better against it, creating a unique challenge for each one them, especially in boss fights.

Charlotte abilities aren’t exclusive to combat, platforming, traversal sections and backtracking are also a high aspect of the core gameplay of the game, expanding it to different things to do, making the player feel that they are not making the same thing over and over again.

Key Features:

  • New game+: replay the game from the beginning keeping all the upgrades you unlocked in the previous playthrough;
  • Collectibles: items the player can find during the game. They can either be in the map or an enemy drop;
  • Fast-travel: go to point A to point B by using the fast-travels terminals across the game;
  • Scripted events: the player can expect some cinematic/scripted sections in the game;
  • Acessibility: colorblind mode will be available in the game, seeing that a lot of the gameplay is based on knowing the color assigned to an ability;
  • Charlotte uses a scarf. This is very important to know;

Currently available through Steam Early Access, Mars 2120 is coming to Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and PC (Epic Games Store / Steam) in the second half of 2024.

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