Frictional Games and thechineseroom have confirmed their collaboration on Amnesia: A Machine For Pigs, the Victorian-era sequel to the horror hit Amnesia: The Dark Descent.
A Machine For Pigs first came to light a couple of days ago as the possible title of the follow-up to Amnesia: The Dark Descent – “possible” because as far as titles go, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. But that is in fact the name of the new game, and the oddness is fully intentional, according to Dan Pinchbeck of Dear Esther studio thechineseroom. Pinchbeck is lead writer and designer on the project, which is being developed by thechineserom, while Frictional takes on a “production role.”
The new Amnesia game will not be directly connected to the old one, but will be set in the same “universe,” 60 years later. This time around, players will enjoy the “full-on Victoriana” of 1899 London as wealthy industrialist Oswald Mandus, who suffers feverish visions of a “mysterious, dark machine” before falling into a months-long coma.
A Machine For Pigs will be a first-person horror game but the gameplay itself will differ from that of its predecessor. “People going in will not know what to expect,” Frictional’s Thompas Grip said in an interview with Joystiq. “We tried looking at protecting the sense of it being an Amnesia game and really belonging to the design template that was set up [by the original]. But it’s doing quite a few things that mean players won’t be able to play it like Amnesia [The Dark Descent],” Pinchbeck added.
As for the ARG that started the ball rolling, Frictional hadn’t touched the site at nextfrictionalgame.com in two years and originally tossed up the first blurred promo image just for kicks. “We just wanted to see if anyone would notice it,” Grip said. “Then we saw it was popular and decided, ‘Okay, let’s make it less blurry.'” Excited speculation about the meaning of the image convinced Frictional and thechineseroom to put together the ARG that ultimately led up to the reveal.
No release date for A Machine For Pigs has been set, but the team hopes to have it out by Halloween of this year.