Xbox fans have waited patiently for us to bring Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice to their console’s library and we can’t wait to see what you think. Hellblade supports HDR and the game is enhanced for Xbox One X, with players having the choice of three enhanced modes to select from: Enhanced Visuals mode offers extra FX and visual quality throughout the experience, High Framerate mode runs the game at 60fps, and High-Resolution mode runs the game with dynamic resolutions up to 4K.
For those new to Hellblade, the game tells the story of Senua, a Celtic warrior on a vision quest into savage Viking heartland to save the soul of her lover. Senua’s journey is a physical battle, but a mental one too. As someone who experiences psychosis, Senua’s journey is one that will take you into the fantasies of her own mind. Hellblade truly is a Ninja Theory game in heart and soul, combining our passion for character, story, art, and combat.
Hellblade has been an incredible project for the team here at Ninja Theory. We started development in mid-2014 with a vision that we could break the AAA blockbuster development model by creating a AAA quality game that feels and looks as good as anything else, but that is created with independent freedom and a small budget. Over three years our team of just 20 developers created Senua’s journey with innovation, creative risk-taking, and quality at its core. What started off as a hope that we could make this ‘Independent AAA’ model of development work has turned into an overwhelming critical and commercial success – including winning three Game Awards for Best Performance, Best Audio Design and Games for Impact. Hellblade, half the length of a standard AAA game, and sold at half the price, has proved that creativity can thrive in AAA quality games.
You can learn about our entire development journey, the highs and the lows, in our series of open and honest development diaries released throughout the project. Through these videos you can see how Senua’s story was written, how we built our own performance capture studio on a tiny budget in our boardroom and how our in-house video editor became the award-winning actor behind Senua.
As our first independent title, we had complete freedom to tell the story that we want to and decided to tell the journey of a person that experiences psychosis – namely hearing voices, seeing visions and having unique beliefs about the world around her. Psychosis is a severe mental health difficulty that affects so many people and a subject that we couldn’t take lightly. From the very beginning, we took our research on the subject seriously and has the privilege of working with both academics in neuroscience and people with lived-experience of psychosis to help in our understanding of the subject. This collaboration, underpinned by the work of Wellcome – a global charitable foundation, allowed us to tell Senua’s story in a way that is true to the types of experiences that people live with day in and day out. Hellblade includes a 25-minute feature that discusses in depth the approach that we took to portraying Senua’s mental health difficulties
Finally, a big thank you to all the fans that have made our journey with Hellblade a success so far. We have received incredible support for the game and it wonderful to see new players coming to the game every day and telling us about their experience. We can’t wait for Xbox players to join the Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice family on April 11.