Publisher Raw Fury and developer Playmestudio today announced that The Signifier, the upcoming mind-bending tech-noir mystery adventure video game, will release for PC via Steam and GOG.com on October 15th. A PlayStation 4 and Xbox One release is expected in early 2021, but for now, a brief gameplay walkthrough has been shared to show just what folks can expect to experience in October.
ComicBook.com actually had a chance to check out a preview demo of The Signifier last week, and creative director David Fenner -- the same one that's in the gameplay walkthrough above -- provided an overview of the title while also explaining a bit more about the game. Players take on the first-person role of an investigator tasked with looking into the memories of a dead person in order to reconstruct just what happened using an AI and "deep brain scanner" called the Dreamwalker.
Essentially, this allows the player to explore events from the past as remembered by the deceased person. But because they are memories, they are not perfect and are sometimes a little glitchy. This is further expounded by the game's main gameplay mechanic: swapping between objective and subjective states. The objective state is pretty sparse and based on facts like how big the stairs are, where the bottle was, and so on. The subjective state is based on the emotional memory of characters, and that's where things can get real weird like a clock that turns into a warped ladder thanks to associated memories.
The puzzle aspect of the game is bringing something called "raw data" back and forth between the two states. Manipulating this data points to hints as to where it might go. In the demo, for example, fiddling with some raw data produced chiming, which pointed to the glitching clock on the wall. It's not always about going back and forth, and raw data can be found or belong in either state. It really came across like a memory-based Myst, and I told Fenner as much.
"You could say Myst is an inspiration," Fenner said. "The concept goes way back, so the inspirations are quite old, but Myst is one of them. Also Silent Hill 2 is another inspiration, but the psychological aspects of it which was really cool at the time. There's a lot of films as well, literature. But yeah, I feel proud if you're relating it to Myst."
"Step foot into the Dreamwalker, a deep brain scanner which recreates recorded senses in the virtual world, and venture into the memories of the deceased. Within the strange and unpredictable depths of the human consciousness, you’ll unravel a multi-layer narrative of power and intrigue that will leave you questioning everything. Move freely between three dimensions -- reality, the objective and the subjective -- exploring different events and environments for clues, solving puzzles, and putting the pieces together to discover the truth."
The Signifier is set to launch on October 15th for PC via Steam and GOG.com. It is also expected to release early next year for both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. You can check out all of our previous coverage of gaming right here.
What do you think of what we have seen of The Signifier so far? Are you excited to check it out when it releases in October? Let us know in the comments, or hit me up directly on Twitter at @rollinbishop to talk all things gaming!