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Room-spinning Puzzler Refactor Coming to PS4

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Bob Webb's Avatar Posted by on Mar 02, 2016 // Lead Developer and CEO, NextGen Pants

We’re proud to announce that Refactor, the world’s first Tetroidvania, is coming to PS4!

What is a Tetroidvania?

Taking elements from classic metroidvanias such as Super Metroid and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Refactor blends them with the falling block puzzle genre to create an entirely unique physics-based puzzle platforming experience.

The standard formula of a metroidvania is based off of the concept of an open world with gated progression. In Refactor you play as a tetromino, a four-block shape popularized by Tetris, with each of the shapes being tied to abilities that change the way you traverse and interact with the world.

For example, the square shape can be used to combat enemies or the line shape to leap great distances. These shapes can be further augmented by special abilities found throughout the world. While these powers are fairly standard for the metroidvania genre, we’ve turned it up a notch and have given you the ability to rearrange the map in a puzzle-like manner.

Refactor on PS4

Turning the World Upside Down

Set in a world that is a puzzle itself, you can literally turn the world upside down by rearranging the map. The rooms that make up the map can be reordered, moved around and even rotated, all in real time. It is up to you to construct new pathways to previously inaccessible areas, to solve mind-bending puzzles, and to uncover secrets in the world of Refactor.

Refactor is a game about experimentation and discovery; there is no “right” solution to every problem. It is up to you to choose how to rearrange the world and to find the most potent combinations of abilities. Given the freedom the world provides, we’ve been consistently surprised by the unique and effective solutions people achieve in Refactor. So pick up the controller and make your own mark on the world!

Story

Every day in the world of Refactor, thousands of puzzle pieces are created for the explicit purpose of playing “The Game.” Requiring perfection, only perfect puzzle pieces are selected for use and those who are imperfect are shunned by society and decommissioned. Thrown into this hostile environment, it is up to a couple of misfits to find their place in this unbending society.

Refactor on PS4

Play as two misshapen characters who team up to create a completed tetromino. Explore the world of Refactor to unlock new upgrades and powers. Defeat the gatekeepers to acquire new shapes and augments, each granting you a new ability. Discover where you fit in, or take command and make your own place in the world.

A Long Journey

Refactor began life as Tetropolis in 2013, having been born from a single word: Tetroidvania. The core concept was simply playing as a tetromino with the different shapes bestowing different powers. However, simply playing yet another reskinned metroidvania didn’t excite us. It simply wasn’t enough.

We eventually came to the idea of allowing the player to manipulate the world around them as giant tetromino-shaped rooms. This gave people the ability to explore the world in a way no one has ever attempted. After some spectacular feedback at various showings such as GDC and PAX, we honed our vision into Refactor and we’re tremendously excited for people finally to get their hands on it.

//Add Your Own

14 Comments   3 Replies

1

+ Dethfuse on March 2nd, 2016 at 9:32 am said:

Holy cow this game looks fantastic! I really like how you can move the rooms around in real time to access different areas. It’s like a game within a game. And the graphics and music are sweet. I’ll be picking this up on PS4 for sure.


    Bob Webb's Avatar

     

    + Bob Webb on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:07 am said:

    Glad so see you’re excited for Refactor! We emphasize exploration and experimentation so there’s plenty to be discovered in the game. Like you said, as you move those rooms around, everything in them gets affected: including pipes and resources that were previously connected to other rooms. So you may stop getting crates coming from ducts, spawns of enemies from holes in the walls, etc until they’re hooked back up to the source. This may be a benefit or you may need to actually use one of these resources to solve one of the many puzzles. ;)


2

+ pablikenemy79 on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:16 am said:

Think about a VITA Version with the touch and tilt control, please cosider this..


     

    + pablikenemy79 on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:20 am said:

    *consider


3

+ Welmosca on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:17 am said:

Hoou this game looks good,the gameplay seems very neat and its gorgeous this is what I expect from a PS4 PSN game.Also those posters reminds me of Bioshock…I’m definitely looking forward to try this one out,good job.


4

+ Gigonuts on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:23 am said:

The game looks great Thank You Guys.keep it up


5

+ Seluhir on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:29 am said:

Interesting concept. Very interesting.


6

+ plaztiksyke on March 2nd, 2016 at 11:42 am said:

it’s cool to see an indie game using some current-gen graphics capabilities!

it looks like global illumination is being used, but not multi-bounce. (the reflection of the blue tetromino on the wall doesn’t bounce to the floor.) does the game run at 1080p60? if not, what prevents a current-gen feature like multi-bounce GI from working at 30fps?

I can definitely see that the dark look of the game won’t work with the stripped-down rendering necessary to run on the Vita, so I won’t even ask :)

who’s doing the music? will sound assets be 24-bit FLAC?


    Bob Webb's Avatar

     

    + Bob Webb on March 2nd, 2016 at 12:19 pm said:

    We’re aiming for 1080p 60fps and are enabling more graphical features as we improve performance (dynamic GI being one of them). As you said, a Vita port would be pretty difficult without pairing down the graphical fidelity quite dramatically not to mention the associated cost of running with so many dynamic physics objects.

    Our music is all done in-house and will probably remain compressed in Vorbis (the default Unity setting) unless we feel there is an unnecessary drop in quality. We will, however, be releasing full high quality versions of the soundtrack online.


7

+ VinsanityV21 on March 2nd, 2016 at 1:49 pm said:

This reminds me of Oddworld, visually. The aesthetic of the setting is really cool like in that game. At first I was like, “So you just play as blocks, big deal”, and then you started flipping the rooms around and reconnecting everything — I’m sold on this concept! Looks super, super fresh and totally awesome! If I could, I’d put it on my PSN Wishlist right now! Definitely looking forward to when this launches!

Though I admit, I liked the working title of Tetropolis better :P


8

+ Hakumen__ on March 2nd, 2016 at 4:54 pm said:

As pablikenemy79 says, a Vita version that made use of the PS Vita hardware features would be amazing.

Any plans for a PS Vita version?


    Bob Webb's Avatar

     

    + Bob Webb on March 2nd, 2016 at 5:01 pm said:

    Not at the moment; we’re a very small team (4 people with myself as the only programmer) so we don’t have a lot of resources to do ports. If we do a Vita port, it would have to wait until our PC and PS4 launch; I’d certainly love to incorporate a lot of the hardware features into gameplay!


9

+ sp1xy1ay on March 2nd, 2016 at 7:33 pm said:

I like soup.


     

    + micdy70 on March 2nd, 2016 at 8:48 pm said:

    i don’t


10

+ Akmaljon on March 2nd, 2016 at 9:11 pm said:

Looks unique and fun! Love the soundtrack.


11

+ KonietzkyStrain on March 3rd, 2016 at 8:54 am said:

Love Metroidvania games and Tetris… really dig the cool puzzle concept. Curious what the price-point is going to be and how long a game it is.


12

+ plaztiksyke on March 3rd, 2016 at 1:32 pm said:

encoding audio in Ogg isn’t awful, just make sure it’s 320kbps like many of the other indie titles! :)


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