Lucid Dreams Studio describes their upcoming game Biomorph as “Hollow Knight meets Kirby in a dark Metroidvania.” After playing the demo today at PAX West, I can’t argue with this description–it’s spot on!
Maxime Gregoire and Francis LaPierre led their team of 12 into creating a unique mixture of grim storytelling and lighthearted gameplay. The development of Biomorph has taken three years to complete, and after finishing touches, the game will release to Steam in March 2024. It’s not yet known when it will reach other platforms, but that process is in motion.
Details about Biomorph
Here’s how Lucid Dreams Studio describes their game: “In Biomorph, you must use your skills to explore a vast, varied world. Solve puzzles and platforming challenges, fight deadly monsters and take their shapes to use their powers. But beware – every conquered creature can come back with new and even more threatening powers. You will level-up your character, Harlo, as you fight through the vast areas around the city, collecting new abilities, mementos and blueprints. The journey will reveal surprising and alarming truths about our hero’s own origins.”
Check out the announcement trailer below:
- Become Your Enemy: Much like Nintendo’s Kirby, Biomorph‘s Harlo can kill enemies and steal their abilities, which will help you defeat more powerful enemies, as well as to explore new regions.
- They Learn Your Ways: Biomorph has a challenging AI that adapts to player decisions. Beware: whichever creatures you mimmick will gain new abilities to fight against you when you revisit areas. Choose wisely!
- Choose Your Weapons: Harlo has both ranged and melee weapons, each with their own upgrade tree. This allows players to create unique builds that match their playstyle.
- Explore a Vast World: Biomorph has a vast, interconnected world of 16 biomes, filled with optional boss fights, NPCs, secrets, and upgrades.
- City Customization: Players help rebuild the city of Blightmoor, customizing the look of the city; as Blightmoor is rebuilt, players dive deeper into the game’s lore and reveal more about Harlo’s past.
Biomorph is FUN. The gameplay is smooth and moving Harlo through the imaginative worlds feels natural; I was able to forget about button mapping and let myself sink into the immersive story.
The “Kirby effects” keep the game fresh as new enemies are introduced while players explore with Harlo; killing them and stealing their powers essentially gives players a new tool to unlock regions of the map to explore or to use to solve puzzles. Given that re-exploration of previous areas is essential to the Metroidvania experience, this mechanic will sit well with players. Unlock Metroid or other similar games, players don’t have to defeat a major boss or discover a remote area of the map to finally get a new ability; enemies are everywhere, meaning players will feel the potential for new gameplay constantly.
On a more personal note, I had the chance to talk extensively with the CEO and Co-founder of Lucid Dreams Studio, Maxime Gregoire. Gregoire has creative passion and authenticity in spades, and he took the time to share with me his personal story and how the company came to have its name.
Both Gregoire and co-founder Francis La Pierre attended college together in 2003, working towards a degree in physics. Upon building a friendship, each realized they’d prefer a career in game design. Together, they switched majors, opting for computer science instead.
Upon graduation, they realized how difficult it would be to start a company and break into the gaming space. They made a pact that each would gain experience in the industry and ten years later would start a company together. Fast forward to 2017, and Gregoire called his friend and said “Hey, it’s time!” La Pierre, who was working on Far Cry at the time, without hesitation, said “Give me a month and I’m in!”
And the rest is history. Gregoire and La Pierre realized their decades-long dream of game design and starting their own company. Combined with their belief that video games offer us a chance to palpably experience our dreams, the two named their company Lucid Dreams Studio, marking their achievements together.
Source: Lucid Dreams Studio