Spruiked in super-teaser form since before the Series X even launched, Hellblade II: Sanua’s Saga has been one of those games peripherally sitting in your head unformed. Which is a concept in keeping with the series’ themes, but the reality is we’re in for something transformative and transcendent, if The Game Awards’ gameplay reveal from Ninja Theory is anything to go by.
The first Senua was a claustrophobic affair; cinematic in scope, intimate in its narrative, and invasive in how all of that came together. In Senua’s Saga this clearly remains. Senua is still joined by her fear-cum-characters, questioning her every move and every decision, and with an army now clearly in her employ -- at least in what was shared on-stage -- all imaginary eyes are on her.
It’s important to remember that at events like The Game Awards, vertical slice gameplay reveals, or even revealed sections from the final game are bombastic and large, and are never fully indicative of the overall journey that lies in wait. And with that in mind, what we can take from this slice of gameplay for Hellblade II: Senua’s Saga is that she’s a grown character, with new responsibilities and a bigger, more terrifying world before her. But this grand vision, personified by the giant who knows her name -- all of this comes with emotional, psychological weight that is the centrepiece of Ninja Theory’s storytelling where this Norse and Celt-based world and its central character are concerned.
Check out the video embedded above, and be sure to give this a close listen upon multiple re-watches, because if you know anything about this series and this developer, there’s much, much more hidden beneath its incredibly impressive visual presentation.