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Today’s Spotlight is Anodyne 2: Return to Dust, the follow-up to 2013’s retro-inspired adventure game by Sean Han Tani, Marina Kittaka, and Analgesic Productions.
Much like its predecessor, Anodyne 2: Return to Dust is an experimental adventure game inspired by classic games like Zelda. This time around, Anodyne makes the shift to PS1 and N64 era 3D graphics, but still contains levels where you shift to a 16-bit 2D aesthetic. You can check out the launch trailer above.
The game is set on the island of New Theland, which is currently infected by a substance called Nano Dust that distorts the emotions and personalities of the native islanders. You play as Nova, a Nano Cleaner tasked with helping the people of New Theland by shrinking herself and cleaning up the Dust in their bodies. The story is completely standalone, so you don’t need to play the original to understand it.
Here’s a rundown of the game:
Rescue A Mysterious Island From A Mind-Warping Plague
Nano Dust infects the islanders of New Theland, distorting their emotions and desires. You play as Nova, a Nano Cleaner who must explore the island, seeking out the sick and shrinking inside their bodies to suction up the Dust.
Anodyne 2: Return to Dust combines the thrilling scale and cinematic storytelling of 3D games with the tight design and easy-to-pick-up satisfaction of 2D Zelda-like adventures. With art that re-imagines the PS1 and N64 era, explore 3D cities, valleys, and wastelands then shrink into the varied 2D mindscapes of characters, from snowy, aurora-lit valleys to perilous volcanic construction sites!
- In 3D, jump, drive, and walk across gorgeous and haunting locales, speaking with strange and memorable characters.
- In 2D, use your Nano Vacuum to collect dust, suck up and fight enemies, all while overcoming mind-bending challenges related to the characters’ inner lives.
- Experience the thrilling and emotional story of Nova. Her destiny is clear: she is the Nano Cleaner who will save New Theland. But strange characters & painful experiences will put her loyalty to the test…
- Choose where you want to go! The sweeping vistas of New Theland quickly open up to exploration.
- The Cards you find on your journey will allow you to access the outer reaches of New Theland.
- No waiting for horses! Instantly transform into a car to quickly drive around the world.
- Use your Spark to shrink into the bodies of the infected, explore the 2D Zelda-like dungeons within, and heal them.
- Enjoy the lush, dreamy and breathtaking 3D and 2D landscapes painted and pixeled by artist Marina Kittaka.
- Listen to over 50 new songs influenced by countless genres by Sean Han Tani, perfectly fitting the varied landscapes of Anodyne 2.
- A new game from the dream duo behind Anodyne 1, All Our Asias, and Even the Ocean.
A Lush, Surreal Lo-fi 3D and 2D World
Anodyne 2: Return to Dust uses modern technology to reimagine old 3D art of the PS1, PS2, and N64 era, as well as the 2D art of the GBA and SNES. Each area captures a strong visual mood, with new characters to meet and sights to see.
If you like exploring beautiful places and experiencing dramatic stories – Anodyne 2’s world is ready for you to explore!
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