The first rule of creating an unforgettable horror game is that there are no rules. As a developer it’s all about going with your gut. This is a guiding principal at Striking Distance Studios. We sweat the small stuff to deliver hand crafted scares that blend atmosphere, tension, brutality, humanity, and helplessness. We call it “Horror Engineering.”
While you’ll find plenty of atmosphere and tension in the first trailer for The Callisto Protocol, we wanted to put the game’s brutality front and center in our reveal for Xbox gamers. The Callisto Protocol is a story based third-person sci-fi survival horror game set on Jupiter’s dead moon Callisto in the year 2230. Players take on the role of Jacob Lee, a prisoner in Black Iron Prison. Jacob must wage a brutal battle to survive when a mysterious outbreak throws the moon into chaos.
One of the first things that you’ll notice about The Callisto Protocol is the creatures. They’re called Biophage, and these things are grotesque. All of our creatures start out as humans who have undergone terrifying, flesh-tearing transformations and now roam the halls of Black Iron. And we want to put players up close and personal with these monstrosities. The Callisto Protocol’s combat system is a mix of close-quarters melee action, long range gunplay, and a unique gravity gun called the GRP (“Grip”) that lets players move seamlessly between the two.
The game’s melee system uses a stun baton that Jacob has scavenged from one of the prison’s guards. Previously used to suppress inmates, the baton can beat back Biophage as Jacob tries to prevent them from tearing him apart. Players can doge or block attacks using the left stick while looking for an opening to land a skull-splitting move on their opponents.
The game’s ranged combat will give players a selection of upgradeable weapons to take out Biophage from a distance. Skilled players can take off the creatures’ arms, legs, and even heads – but that’s no guarantee that this will stop the Biophage from attacking. And since ammo is scarce, players will need to be strategic with their shooting.
And finally, the GRP is a powerful weapon that lets players grab and throw objects in the environment, including enemies. Attacked by a mob of creatures? Players can grab Biophage with the GRP and throw them across the room to get some breathing room. Low on ammo? The GRP can grab enemies and pull them closer for a melee kill. The GRP gives players a strategic way to control the pace of the action.
And of course, for some particularly brutal fun, players can throw Biophage into environmental hazards like spinning industrial fans, spiked walls, and power generators. The grisly possibilities are endless.
We hope you liked this first look at The Callisto Protocol! We’ll have more to share with Xbox players in the weeks ahead of our launch on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S later on December 2 this year. You can pre-order the game now on the Microsoft Store on Xbox.
The Callisto Protocol for Xbox Series X|S – Day One Edition
The Callisto Protocol for Xbox One – Day One Edition
The Callisto Protocol for Xbox One – Digital Deluxe Edition