Haven is an RPG with loading screens that show a rare side of love and sex – Polygon5 min read

https://www.polygon.com/2021/2/9/22274450/haven-the-game-bakers-nintendo-switch-game-pass-loading-screens-romance

Again, the video game needs stakes? You invest your time attempting to conceal from the powers who desire to tear you apart, however even when that risk isnt present, theres a continuous worry about Kay and Yus chances for survival.
What struck me while playing through all of this, however, is that despite the drama of the real video game, whenever you enter into a new location, a filling screen will turn up. And the packing screens are the complete opposite of the intense pressure of the video game itself. Here, the game portrays quieter moments between the 2, like brushing each others hair or resting on the couch playing a computer game. It can get pretty domestic: There are filling screens that appear to reveal Yu and Kay arguing over securing the garbage, or selecting out a tie for a night out.

Stories usually need tension and drama to be engaging, once youre connected, you might begin feeling a little protective of the poor characters experiencing that tension. This could explain why fan works like to depict characters in more ordinary situations, like being a regular at a coffeeshop or selecting casual clothing for the day. In Haven, the developers have already done that work for you.
Haven is dystopian sci-fi RPG about two enthusiasts who become fugitives after defying the orders of “the matchmaker,” a mystical entity that chooses who you can pair with. While I have not beaten it yet, throughout my eight hours with the video game, Ive found its one of the best-written interactive experiences Ive had just recently. The discussions in between Yu and Kay, our heroes, feel natural, a rarity in computer game which typically seem like theyre composed to sound quippy and stylish.
It helps that the voice acting in Haven is great, including a real sense of chemistry between the 2 leads. They quarrel, theyre silly, theyre susceptible, theyre outrageous– the game reveals everything that a relationship becomes behind closed doors. Hell, sometimes, if you pause for too long in the video games overworld, the 2 will simply start making out.

Image: The Game Bakers

The fact that I even saw is uncommon. Rather than just zoning out or scrolling through my phone throughout loading times, as I carry out in 99% of video games that I play, I actually started anticipating Havens dozens of packing screens. They were a welcome reprieve from the games main dilemma.
The aim of these loading screens, according to imaginative director Emeric Thoa, is to show Yu and Kays “very first times” for everything.
” First time they prepared for each other, very first time they got ill, very first nap on the sofa, very first time they had an argument, first time they kissed, first time they sobbed in front of each other, first time they had sex … Its a little glance of their previous life before they left whatever behind to leave on a deserted world,” Thoa said over email. The screens were drafted by character artist Koyorin, and they focus entirely on the characters. Theres no text or game tips, and there are couple of colored components.
The packing screens almost seem random, however theyre not. One packing screen occurs to reveal Kay, the male lead, cooking in absolutely nothing however an apron. While this records the dynamic in between the two perfectly, there is also a later variation of the screen that shows Yu cooking in absolutely nothing but an apron. Within the context of a love, both variations of this make sense. However the developers desired to really earn the players trust prior to illustrating Yu like that in the game.

Image: The Game Bakers

” We felt that might have been perceived as a rude stereotype,” Thoa stated. “So we developed a function that permitted us to unlock these loading screens gradually in order to ensure that some of them would not show up until the mid-game or the endgame. In this manner, a few of the images cant be seen till you truly know the characters, up until you understand that Yu remains in control and shes just being lively.”
Sanctuary was recently launched for Nintendo Switch, and is a part of Xbox Game Pass. You can also play it on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Windows PC. Even if youre presently fearing Februarys impending Valentines Day, I highly suggest you check Haven out. The games grounding representation of sex and romance hurts enough to melt the heart of even the most jaded skeptics.
” Haven has to do with revealing heroes in their daily life,” Thoa said. “Its about whats under the drape, in between the takes. Its the love thats never ever displayed in our culture of epic entertainment.”

What struck me while playing through all of this, though, is that despite the drama of the real video game, every time you go into a new location, a loading screen will pop up. And the packing screens are the complete reverse of the intense pressure of the game itself. Here, the game illustrates quieter minutes between the two, like brushing each others hair or sitting on the sofa playing a video game. Rather than just zoning out or scrolling through my phone during loading times, as I do in 99% of video games that I play, I actually began looking forward to Havens dozens of packing screens. Sanctuary was recently launched for Nintendo Switch, and is a part of Xbox Game Pass.

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