Resolution Games’ Demeo aims to re-create a tabletop dungeon crawl in VR
December 9, 2020
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Resolution Games has us cooking and fishing in VR. Now it plans to send us into a dungeon for loot.

Today, Resolution is announcing Demeo, a turn-based role-playing game that’s coming in 2021. It’s going to be cross-platform, meaning not only will it work on Oculus Quest, Rift, and Steam VR, but it’ll also be available on Steam without VR. This will be Resolution’s first game that works outside VR. And it makes sense — not only is PC a bigger market than VR, but if you’ll be playing co-op, you’ll be able to get together with folks who don’t have a Quest, a Rift, a Vive, or an Index. Co-op is nothing new for Resolution, but bringing in non-VR gamers is.

In an email to GamesBeat, Resolution Games CEO Tommy Palm noted that the company wanted to keep details sparse at the moment. He does say that “Demeo is a dungeon crawler, fantasy RPG, co-op multiplayer, virtual game night, all rolled into one.”

The one thing that’s clear is Resolution wants to bring game night into VR. Others have been working on virtual tabletops since VR got rolling several years ago, but the studio sees a bigger need for games that replicate playing with friends at home as the pandemic drags on into 2021.

“Regularly scheduled game nights with friends have been a long-standing tradition for many players, even if they’ve long since moved on from the experience. These game nights are a hugely positive memory for most, including many of us on the team,” Palm said. “Demeo lets players connect with friends in the ways they used to, only better: They can get together from anywhere in the world, discard the monotony of re-reading instructions, and have absolutely no risk of Dorito-stained fingers damaging the cards.”

When I think of dungeon-crawl games, I think along the lines of Gloomhaven and Talisman.

“We’re not revealing too many details about gameplay at this point, but if the choice is between those two, it leans more toward the feeling of Gloomhaven,” Palm said. “The benefit of it being virtual is you don’t have to spend time setting up the game and reading through the rules again since it’s already there for you.”

So far, Resolution has put out VR games about cooking and fishing, throwing around Angry Birds and other activities. It hasn’t made a dungeon-crawler yet. I wonder why it felt this would be a fit for Resolution.

“The team consists of people from all over the games industry with experience coming from the biggest studios, including Mojang, Dice, King, and Rovio, among others, including industry legends [such as Mike Booth] as well as folks from smaller indie studios. Making a game like this requires a wide range of expertise that we definitely have within the team and the company,” Palm said. “While this is a new genre for Resolution Games as a developer/publisher, the team is extremely passionate about this type of game.”

As with other studios, Resolution wants to recapture that feeling of playing games with your friends.

“Many of us remember spending countless late-night hours with friends huddled over an ‘old-fashioned tabletop RPG game.’ We are all personally very sensitive to translating this special experience to VR, and we’ve spent the past few years figuring out how to do that just right,” Palm said. “Needless to say, we are very excited to be a part of sharing Demeo with the world soon.”

I was also curious why Resolution wasn’t planning on Demeo being an action-RPG, which feels like a good fit for VR.

“That’s often the first thing people think of when talking about VR, but few think of the social aspect of VR that is incredibly impactful. With Demeo, we really want to replicate that feeling when you have gathered all your friends for a game night. Even more now, when the world has drastically changed,” Palm said.


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