Today, independent developer Hi-Bit Studios announced the release date of 198X, its over-the-top arcade action meets coming-of-age drama in development for PS4, PC, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox One. According to the developer, the game will hit PS4 and PC on June 20, 2019. As for the Nintendo Switch and Xbox One versions, they currently don't have a release date, but Hi-Bit notes said versions are coming soon. Meanwhile, to accompany the announcement, the developer has also released a brand-new trailer.
"198X is an arcade epic. A coming-of-age story told through multiple games and genres, worlds and characters. Experience the thrill of shooting, driving, jumping, fighting and role-playing – combined with emotional, cinematic storytelling," writes Hi-Bit Studios of the game. "This is a love letter to the golden age of arcade games – yet with a scope that was never possible in the actual 1980s."
The game is set in Suburbia, just outside the city, sometime in the 1980s, and follows the journey of "Kid," a teenager stuck between the limitations of innocent youth and becoming an adult. The story picks up when Kid discovers a local arcade, where he's able to find new worlds and new meaning in video games. Every time Kid visits the arcade and plays a new game, he grows stronger, but also the line between reality and game begins to blur.
Speaking of arcade games, 198X is built around them. It features five distinct arcade games that transform the game into a Beat Em' Up, a Shoot Em' Up, a RPG, a Ninja game, and even a Racing game. Each of these arcade games, which are inspired by classic themes, are fully playable games that feature multiple stages and settings and mechanics that will feel very familiar to those who've dabbled in the games from yesteryear.
At the moment of publishing, there's been no word of any additional ports, and it's unclear how much the game will cost at launch.
Anyway, as always, feel free to leave a comment letting us know what you think or hit me up on Twitter @Tyler_Fischer_ and let me know over there. Do you plan on picking this one up?