A small group of industry veterans including the creative director and lead writer of BioShock 2, the senior gameplay programmer of Dishonored, and the lead effects artist for BioShock Infinite have banded together to create a new immersive sim.
According to Question, it's mission is to deliver "focused, AAA-quality experiences with deeply realized worlds that engage players on a cerebral level and leave them with more questions than answers".
The game it first hopes will achieve that is The Blackout Club, a cooperative paranormal horror mystery that is due out early next year on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
Here's the pitch:
Set in a small town with a monstrous secret, The Blackout Club follows a group of teens who band together after learning they’ve all been temporarily losing consciousness – waking up in strange places with no memory of what they have done. Recently, one of their closest friends vanished entirely.
When none of their parents, teachers, or even the police are willing to believe them, the friends launch an investigation. Together they will discover a maze of tunnels – a hostile underworld filled with hypnotic music and populated by a clandestine group of adults – all beneath their seemingly idyllic suburbs.
To save their community and themselves, the teens will need to capture the conspiracy on camera and prove its existence to the world. That has up to four players sneaking out of their homes and go on surveillance missions filled with procedurally-generated elements including variable objectives, enemy encounters, loot drops, and more.
Every night will be a different adventure as the team seeks out additional clues and explores new parts of their neighbourhood and its ominous underbelly. The club must trust no one as they get closer to finding out what happened to their missing friend -- and the cause of their uncontrollable blackouts.
Dangers lurking in the night will include sleepwalking adults and an entity "that pursues its prey relentlessly" and "can’t be seen with open eyes".
Player characters will be customisable with a variety of powers and equipment loadouts.
Every member of the group will play a distinct role and use devices like drones or deployable traps to outwit their foes and gather evidence of their crimes.
When the mission is complete, players will head back to the hideout, where they can level up and acquire new abilities for use on future outings.
"In The Blackout Club, the horror genre comes home," said Question co-founder Jordan Thomas.
"Our story is about vulnerable heroes – for whom co-op gameplay is a matter of survival – who unite to save their friends. We love expressive systems, where you shape the game experience as you see fit, often versus a whole ecosystem of intelligent threats.
"And now, they're right next door - in a familiar, modern town, where the monster wears a human face. We can’t wait for you to meet it."