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Insomniac announces Feral Rites, an Oculus-exclusive beast mode brawler


Insomniac Games just revived an old favorite with the Ratchet & Clank reboot on PS4, but now it's going all-in on new game ideas for the rest of the year. In addition to Edge of Nowhere and The Unspoken (opens in new tab), the experienced studio has just announced Feral Rites, an 'adventure brawler' set on a beautiful-but-brutal island, for a total of three Oculus-exclusive games coming in 2016. Check out the teaser trailer:


The quick pitch for Feral Rites is that it's a cross between The Legend of Zelda's sense of exploration and God of War's flowing, hyperaggressive combat, with the added hook that you can shapeshift into a primal animal form at will. You play as the son or daughter of a murdered village chieftain, and after growing up in exile, you're back to reclaim your rightful leadership by punching, slashing, and eviscerating anyone who stands in your way. All the action unfolds from the classic third-person perspective, but unlike Edge of Nowhere's behind-the-back perspective, Feral Rites uses fixed camera angles strewn throughout the level (a bit like Chronos, another Oculus-exclusive action RPG).

One of the hallmarks of Insomniac games is a varied arsenal of inventive firearms and mechanized killing machines, but Feral Rites is taking things back to basics, restricting combat to your own two fists (or claws, as the case may be). "The first rule that we had - even before we knew what the game was - was 'no weapons'," said creative director Marcus Smith (who also helmed development on the bombastic Sunset Overdrive). The hand-to-hand, one-against-many melees are heavily inspired by the flow of fighting games, as comboing attacks is crucial to success. You'll even be able to swap in and out of your animal form mid-combo (multiple times, if you're skilled enough), which should lead to some pretty flashy, animalistic beatdowns. 

Add in some classic action RPG accoutrements like collectible armor sets, a bevy of side-quests, and multiple abilities, and Feral Rites is sounding like a savage good time. The game is currently slated for a Fall 2016 release, but we'll be able to get our hands on it at this year's E3. Here are the rest of Feral Rites' debut screenshots so you can get in the appropriately untamed mood until then. 

Lucas Sullivan is the former US Managing Editor of GamesRadar+. Lucas spent seven years working for GR, starting as an Associate Editor in 2012 before climbing the ranks. He left us in 2019 to pursue a career path on the other side of the fence, joining 2K Games as a Global Content Manager. Lucas doesn't get to write about games like Borderlands and Mafia anymore, but he does get to help make and market them.