The Lost Pisces is a reimagining of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Little Mermaid as an open world adventure with giant machines, AI, and other sci-fi tones, all realized in Unreal Engine 4. After about three years of work its creators at indie studio Sirenum will be taking it to Kickstarter on February 20th.
It’s set in at the end of a technological Atlantis during which everything is being flooded, so there’s plenty of water and snow around, as well as steel towers and spaceships flying overhead. You play as PISCES, this machine that takes the form of a mermaid, and who gains an awareness of her being. With her newfound consciousness, she grows a fear of becoming obsolete, or simply returning to a machine that serves others for hundreds of years, so she sets out to find herself a soul.
While The Lost Pisces is described open world it takes place in three distinct areas that you can fully roam freely. There are buildings to climb, sharks to visit by swimming in the seas, and plenty of rocky shores to run across. It’s also described, at least in part, as a shooter. But it’s not exactly your traditional kind of shooter, either.
In fact, the combat is most similar to Shadow of the Colossus, as Sirenum’s artist and designer Dan Rutkowski told OnlySP. The main enemies will be large machines controlled by AI that will crush Pisces just because they can. And if she pisses them off they’ll hunt her down, too.
“One of the things that we’re going to show in the KickStarter is how powerful the PISCES character actually is. She can manifest these black shards that float around her and she can cast them out. Those shards can pull across the ground and create massive boulders that you can use to bash against the larger robots. As she turns more and more human, the thing is that she loses that ability, so she becomes weaker and weaker. What will happen is you will see her as more and more human. She’s evolving beyond just being a machine, and you have to take up the slack, up to the gamer’s character to fulfil that role,” Rutkowski told OnlySP.
The other element of The Lost Pisces worth noting is that PISCES, the main character, will apparently learn from the actions and decisions you make with her. It also uses Kinect and a program called Faceshift to detect emotions that you express while playing the game – these will also contribute to the personality of PISCES.