Hellblade Dev Diary Explores Intricacies of Movement and Control

Ninja Theory shows how motion capture was used to bring Senua to life.


Heavenly Sword, Enslaved, and DmC: Devil May Cry studio Ninja Theory has released a new developer diary for Hellblade, its upcoming third-person action game.

The video, which is the 20th episode in an ongoing behind-the-scenes series that looks at the game's creation, is focused on movement and control. The team discusses how protagonist Senua communicates non-verbally with the player through movement and animations.

This aspect of the game was achieved, primarily, through motion capture. Using its own cheaply built mocap studio, Ninja Theory figured out how to animate Senua so that she conveys fear, properly shows resistance when walking in water, and exhibits other intricate details.

Hellblade explores themes of mental health and features third-person combat. Ninja Theory's stated goal has been to develop a AAA video game experience on an indie budget by coming up with creative solutions for costly production elements such as motion capture.

The studio has said Hellblade will deliver "ninja-class melee gameplay, strong character stories, and a unique art vision."

In September 2015, Ninja Theory confirmed that it retired a "vertical slice" of Hellblade that it showed to press. However, the studio said at the time that the game was still on track to launch in 2016.

Sony has secured Hellblade as a timed PS4 exclusive. However, the game is also in development for PC. For more on Hellblade, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

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Avatar image for LilithN

The new DMC had one of the best, most fluent and precise controls I have ever experienced in such a game. I love that game even though at first did not even want to buy it due to the new "emo" Dante. But it was simply pure fun. I'm looking forward to this game!

Avatar image for louixiii

This is one of those type of games where I would want to play a demo first to see if it's fun...but based off of earlier footage, I'm not too impressed.

Avatar image for RaveNRolla

Timed exclusives are such BS. I understand there have to be exclusives, but timed exclusives don't make any sense? Who's gonna say "oh that game comes out over a year for xbox, so i better buy a ps4 now"? What's the advantage here? I mean I'm not gonna buy an xbox even though i wanna play tomb raider.

Avatar image for putaspongeon

@RaveNRolla: Well it's not coming to xbox, only pc and ps4.

Avatar image for wkadalie

@RaveNRolla: Well I don't like deals made to keep it off other platforms. What I do understand is some DEVs would prefer to focus on one platform first. Limited resources and such.

Avatar image for louixiii

@wkadalie: it's all about competition. deals are made to win and that's what's hapening

Avatar image for oc40

I can't wait for this game...

Avatar image for goodgamesguy

This game looks awesome