Earlier today, The Epic Games Store held its Spring Showcase, revealing several upcoming games that would be coming to the popular PC storefront. During the broadcast, it was revealed that Kingdom Hearts would be making its jump to the PC for the first time via the Epic Games Store and that Chivalry 2 would drop later this year. However, another huge bombshell came in the form of an announcement regarding Axiom Verge 2.
Tom Happ's follow-up will officially be making its way to PC and will be an Epic Games Store exclusive on the platform, launching alongside its originally planned Nintendo Switch release. The game was reaffirmed to be coming this year as well, with the showcase re-debuting the game's original Nintendo Switch announcement trailer with a firm 2021 release date now attached at the end.
For those who missed the trailer last time, it showcases Axiom Verge 2's retro 2D gameplay, with the title's protagonist embarking through some icy caves and grassy exteriors while fighting robots, dodging giant worms, and going toe to toe with a flying monster with mounted rocket launchers on its back. Seeing as the game is Metroidvania, a few of the sequel's abilities are also highlighted, including using a robot that can fit through small tunnels and an explosive attack that destroys walls blocking the player's path. It's a small slice of gameplay that confirms the sequel will continue to deliver what fans loved about its predecessor.
The first Axiom Verge has managed to carve quite a following since its initial release in 2015. Developed by a one-man team consisting of developer Tom Happ, the title was a side-scrolling action-adventure inspired by classics like Metroid, Contra, and Bionic Commando. It followed Trace: a scientist who awakens in an alien world and must find a way to escape, picking up weapons and fighting a variety of powerful foes along the way. It quickly found acclaim from critics and eventually made its way to a variety of platforms, including PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.
Its sequel was eventually announced for the Switch back in 2019 at an Indie World presentation, where it was given a 2020 release date. Late last year, that date was pushed back to 2021. It will join a growing list of timed and full PC-exclusives for The Epic Games Store, including the recent Hitman 3, Chivalry 2, and Kingdom Hearts. It'll be interesting to see whether Tom Happ considers porting Axiom Verge 2 to more platforms following its release on both PC and Nintendo Switch, similarly to how he did with the first game.
Despite not having an official release date yet, Team Cherry's Hollow Knight: Silksong is one of the most anticipated indie games going into 2021. A sequel to the wildly popular Hollow Knight, the series has become extremely popular and has helped usher in the resurgence of the Metroidvania subgenre. A combination of the Metroid and Castlevania game series, Metroidvania games are typically side-scrollers with a heavy emphasis on exploration and character progression. They often feature interconnected maps with obstacles that must be unlocked through items or upgrades.
With the huge success of Hollow Knight and the anticipation behind Hollow Knight: Silksong, fans looking for similar games should delve into the Metroidvania subgenre. Though Hollow Knight's incredibly detailed art style and worldbuilding sets it apart from most games, there are a number of fantastic Metroidvania games that fans should not miss out on.
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