Today, Ukrainian developer Frogwares announced that its mysterious Project Palianytsia is Sherlock Holmes The Awakened, a remake of the 2006 game inspired by H.P. Lovecraft's stories.
The studio also aims to do a substantial rewrite of the original story so that it is a continuation of the young Sherlock seen in Chapter One. Jaroslav Martyniuk, Feature Designers Team Lead at Frogwares, stated:
No assets or code are being repurposed from the original game. We are essentially rebuilding the entire game from scratch to run Unreal Engine 4, using all new assets or ones we can cleverly rework from Sherlock Holmes Chapter One which came out only a few months ago. We’re also adding entirely new gameplay mechanics while reworking the original ones to expand the ways players will be solving the cases. The changes to the story and timeline mean entirely new voice acting will be recorded. We’re also reworking the camera to feel like modern third-person perspective games, remaking all of the UI, animations, cutscenes. The list goes on. It’s essentially an entirely new game with only the underlying story in the cases staying more or less intact.
Sherlock Holmes The Awakened Overview
- All new graphics and assets made in Unreal Engine 4
- New and redone animations
- Full cutscene overhauls
- Additional investigation gameplay mechanics
- Rewriting the story to connect with the case from The Awakened to a younger Sherlock
- Amplifying the story behind how Watson and Holmes came to be so close
- Minor story rewrites to the cases
- Additional side quests
- New English voice-over recordings and translations into multiple languages
- UI overhaul
- Change to contemporary 3rd person perspective camera
- Additional quality of life features
Sherlock Holmes The Awakened is coming to PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, and Nintendo Switch, though it'll first need to get funded on Kickstarter. Sergey Oganesyan, Comms Lead at Frogwares, explained:
Under normal circumstances, we would secure the funding for our next game ourselves from the sales of our previous titles. But this war is continually throwing new challenges at us that each time requires we stop, regroup and adapt. This takes time, effort, and in some cases money that would normally be marked to fund the production of a game.
We have the bulk of the content, new features, and storyline all mapped out and locked in. But we have rewritten the original story a fair bit and plan to use all-new voice acting so we need to now record and also translate all this from scratch. As the plan is to launch the game on five platforms we will also need extensive QA time and resources. And lastly, the team has additional features and enhancement ideas that we would like to consider adding if we were to have additional resources.
The Kickstarter campaign for Sherlock Holmes The Awakened isn't live yet, but shouldn't be far away. Meanwhile, you can follow the project here.