Hardly ever do I watch a trailer for a online game greater than as soon as. But with Bungie’s Marathon reboot/sequel/no matter, I’ve discovered myself looping its slick and classy announcement trailer. It’s not simply because the trailer slaps, however as a result of Bungie is teasing seems to be one of many coolest shooters launched in years.
On March 24, shortly earlier than a Spider-Man 2 trailer would set off an entire new “puddlegate,” Bungie (Halo, Future) revealed its subsequent huge first-person shooter: Marathon. If that identify sounds acquainted, that’s as a result of that is truly Bungie returning to considered one of its oldest franchises, the Mac-only shooter trilogy, Marathon. You possibly can learn extra about these previous video games, their beloved lore, and the way it connects to Halo and trendy extraction shooters in this piece from our very personal Claire Jackson.
Nevertheless, I’m not right here to speak about Marathon’s lore, historical past, fandom, or something involving the Bungie mythos. No, as a substitute, I wish to simply gush for a number of paragraphs about how rattling refreshing and superior this sport’s look and announcement trailer are in comparison with most different shooters and video games on the market as we speak. And I don’t appear to be alone in loving this trailer because it has hit 18 million views on YouTube already.
Marathon has among the best sport trailers of 2023
From the second the trailer’s intense digital music kicks in at the beginning, I used to be engaged. Then we see somebody in a rad-looking sci-fi-fi outfit operating by way of a tunnel, all whereas photographs of vibrant-colored robotic bugs create intricate android-like beings. What’s occurring right here? I don’t know, however did you simply hear that sick bit within the music?
Anyway, the operating character breaks out of the darker tunnels and enters an extremely vibrant world the place we see that also they are rocking vibrant colours, together with a vibrant, neon-pink helmet. The music builds because the digicam zooms in nearer and nearer to the runner. Issues really feel tense because the music builds right into a digital mess after which BAM! That’s all she wrote for this runner as they’re sniped from afar by a slick-looking and white-as-paper android. Our runner, now lifeless, is seen collapsing in sluggish movement into what seems to be a milk-like substance, their blue-inky blood mixing and swirling into the water round their corpse. Because the robotic sniper rips out one thing from the lifeless runner the music builds once more, glitches out, and BAM! Bungie reveals that this vibrant trailer was for a brand new Marathon.
“Vibrant” is absolutely the key phrase right here. All the things on this trailer pops in a manner that I’ve not seen in most different shooters launched lately. Plenty of trendy shooters appear targeted on realism, which might look beautiful, but in addition a bit drab. The favored coloration scheme we sometimes see on shooters additionally begins to make shooters like Name of Obligation and Battlefield mix collectively. Or all of them look a bit an excessive amount of like Fortnite, which whereas colourful, isn’t visually distinct anymore. I take pleasure in lots of these trendy shooters regardless. However with Marathon, issues are completely different.
Really, it’s past colourful. It’s nearly garish with all of its pinks, yellows, greens, and blues clashing in almost each body. But it’s all balanced by hyper-realistic lighting, supplies, textures, and fashions. The colour palettes are unimaginable to take a look at and some of us at Kotaku couldn’t cease gawking on the trailer.
Marathon’s new artwork model is recent and daring
Bungie calls Marathon’s artwork model “graphic realism,” as talked about in a latest behind-the-scenes video in regards to the rebooted shooter. Bungie dev Emily Katske additional elaborates on the sport’s artwork, saying it’s “daring, colourful [and] stylized.”
The sport’s director, Christopher Barret, in the identical video, additionally says that the staff needed the artwork to be “stunning” and “vibrant”, “mysterious” and “acquainted,” “but in addition, unusual.”
Usually, I’d roll my eyes a bit at this sort of speak, however after seeing the trailer and idea artwork of this new tackle Marathon, yeah, I get it. Steadiness is essential, although. Bungie has to rigorously stability when and the place to “dial [things] as much as 11” and when to drag again a bit so people don’t get overwhelmed whereas making an attempt to play.
It’s a dangerous possibility, taking a beloved franchise and transforming it into one thing daring. It’s additionally fairly a departure from the unique Marathon video games, which featured extra subdued or dirty textures and Doom-like sprites. I’ve already noticed some longtime Marathon followers upset about this new, extra colourful, and stylized course. And till we truly play the ultimate sport, we gained’t know if any of this can truly work out. Was this an enormous, costly mistake? Or an enormous gamble that lands completely? No concept!
However Marathon’s trailer, idea artwork, and general model has me extra excited than I anticipated to play this upcoming extraction shooter. I’m not even a fan of that style of on-line FPS, however I wish to see extra of Marathon so badly that I’ll give it a shot. So long as I can waddle round Bungie’s new incredible-looking world for a couple of minutes earlier than getting killed, I’ll be blissful to play and discover Marathon at any time when it comes out.
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