Welcome back to our series of articles, unveiling more details and info about the making of A Plague Tale: Innocence, the upcoming adventure game by Asobo Studio coming 2019 to PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC.
Throughout the various demos and events where A Plague Tale: Innocence has been presented, you’ve discovered Amicia and Hugo. After presenting what went into creative process for these characters last week, today let’s dive into why their bond is so tight.
Forced out of their home and on the run from the Inquisition, Amicia and Hugo travel through the devastated South-West of France to find shelter. The brother and sister barely know each other at the very beginning of our story, but they must learn to live and grow together in order to survive the countless threats surrounding them.
Sébastien Renard, Lead Narrative Designer, recalls the origin of the siblings: “We wanted a heroine out of the ordinary. A partner gives us the opportunity to develop a growing bond between the player and the characters. We want players to gradually consider Hugo as a living and precious character that you want to protect.”
Caring about each other is a core idea for the team. Inspired by the poetic masterpiece Ico, one of the best examples of a game that highlights this idea in story and gameplay, Asobo has worked hard to convey this emotional link in the game mechanics.
It’s a narrative gamble to make Amicia and Hugo initially strangers to one another, despite being siblings. However, it has the benefit of meaning they’ll learn about each other through the story, as the player also learns gameplay mechanics. Narration and gameplay are always tied together.
An example of this is in how Hugo is vital to overcoming many situations, as his small size gives him access to areas Amicia can’t enter. On the other hand, he can’t stay alone for too long, or he may panic and flee or worse…
In the 14th century, fifteen-year-old Amicia is already seen as an adult, but keeps rejecting responsibilities in favor of a playful childishness. Thrust into a brutal and ruthless world where she’s forced to take care of her little brother, she must now take on responsibilities that any adult would find almost impossible to endure.
Five-year-old Hugo is torn between fear and excitement when discovering the world - he is the last link with a life of innocence that Amicia always cherished. “Hugo sees the last remaining scrap of beauty in a ruthless world,” explains Sébastien Renard. “He brings a bit of stability to Amicia, who is his shield against the raw violence unleashed on them.”
See you next week for more info and exclusive anecdotes about the creative process behind A Plague Tale: Innocence!