DrinkBox Studios, best known for last year's Guacamelee!, are making their mobile debut in 2015 with Severed, a first-person exploration and combat game with a killer art style and a soundtrack to match.

Severed is the story of a warrior who mysteriously wakes up with one fewer arm than she went to sleep with. To compensate, she simply hacks off an enemy's arm and uses that one instead. Here's an eye-catching debut trailer:

The game uses gesture controls to swipe through the environment—reminiscent of, say, Year Walk [$3.99]—and engage in combat. In a conversation with Destructoid, DrinkBox compared the combat mechanics to games like Infinity Blade [$6.99] or Punch-Out!: each enemy will have certain patterns or tells, and players will need to react quickly and accurately to slice and dice in return. Cutting games have been pretty well explored since the early days of Fruit Ninja [$1.99 / $1.99 (HD)], but those kinds of controls have a certain resonance with Severed's secondary gameplay: the ability to take hacked-off body parts and use them yourself like some kind of hyena-scavenger zombie Frankenstein.

Different body parts come with unique abilities or give access to different parts of the dreamlike world. Players will need to use the game's various branching paths to find the right upgrades before tackling the game's hardest enemies. "You can go down one path ... and if it's not really working you can go down a different path and try that [one], get the new piece of armor or whatever it is from that path, and then try that first path again [as] you'll be more upgraded," lead designer Greg Lesky explained to Destructoid.

What he doesn't mention is that this hypothetical "new piece of armor or whatever" is the limbless torso of some freshly-butchered demon-monkey.

That's gruesome stuff, but it seems like Severed's super-colorful visuals might play it down to acceptable levels. I can't quite put my finger on that art style, but it seems in keeping with the vaguely Mesoamerican, Día de Muertos bent DrinkBox explored in their previous game. Either way, it cuts a good trailer.

For now, DrinkBox hasn't specified which platforms Severed is being developed for, noting only that it's a mobile game for devices with touch screens. That list may expand to anything that supports gesture-based controls however: handhelds like the PlayStation Vita, Nintendo 3DS, and WiiU tablet are a possibility, as well as motion-sensing and virtual reality gear like the Kinect or Project Morpheus.

Hopefully, we'll know more before the game's planned release next year.

[Twitter, Destructoid]

  • alex13111

    I liked guacamelee so hopefully this turns out good!

  • octopus

    Epic! Reminded me of Claymore manga.

    • Nycteris

      That was the firs thing I thought of. (Well, the anime)

  • falco

    This is very cool but but but why not Guacamelee on ios ?

    • dylanmannen

      Lol, no thank you.
      Dont get me wrong, its a amazing game, but on ios? lol no, just get a console man

      • Xenomorphking

        Just because you don't want them to port the game does not make it a dumb idea. It might not control as good a console release that doesn't mean it wouldn't be fun to play. If they add mifi controller support it could play just as well as a console release. The cost of porting would be cheap enough to make a profit. If you think they should just go get a console maybe you should give them the money too buy one, otherwise shut your trap.

      • Bliquid

        Nope, he's right.
        Guacamelee needs EXTREMELY precise imputs to play.
        Not a chance to get it work properly with touch controls unless you dumb down, well, everything in the game, from enemies to platforming sessions.
        Actually, there are so many occasions in that game where you could not dumb it down enough to make it playable without removing them completely.
        Sorry, but Guacamelee needs real sticks and buttons.

      • Xenomorphking

        I mentioned mifi controller support so you could have real sticks and buttons. The mifi controller prices just need to drop. I would like ported just for the pocket factor honestly. They already ported it to vita witch doesn't have the best joysticks. I have a console I just think it would be fun to have in my pocket.

      • bilboa

        The thing is Apple forbids games being released which rely on a controller to work correctly. What's more the vast majority if iOS gamers don't own a controller so even if Apple allowed it, the company would be shooting themselves in the foot if they released a game on iOS which relied on mfi controllers to work well. So they'd need to make it work well with touch controls for it to be worth porting.

  • Adsinjapan

    Now THIS is my kinda game! Here's hoping they keep that level of music in it too!

  • dylanmannen

    Oh shit, this looks amazing! This is now the number one game i look forward too on ios, looks awesome! But damn, 2015 xD

  • repapermunky

    The enemies in the game, their visuals, remind me of Samurai Jack a bit. Especially that dragon in the beginning. Anyways, looks kinda cool, but I'll have to see if I want it.

  • c_biskit

    This looks good the art sort of reminds me of samurai jack

  • xx99

    Looks incredible, straight to the Watch List.

  • Cookies

    Based on the name, I was expecting some hyper gorefest, but this looks like Samurai Jack's long lost daughter with touch controls...

  • mutts

    Mobile debute?
    Guacamelee is also available on the Vita.
    So technically they had there mobile debute already.

    Severed looks interesting though.

  • ImJPaul

    I'm just going to come out and say it a bit prematurely...... GOTY.

  • coolpepper43


  • Xenomorphking

    I don't like many game made for ios because they usually suck and are riddled with IAP. But I think this one looks good. I do have games on my device but they are ports.

  • Anotherkellydown

    I was zoned into that trailer. Big time. My thoughts?...Awesome music! This is weird! Cool art style! What in the world is going on?? Ha! I'd like to see more of the gameplay in action. Watch list!

  • imcookie

    Wow the art style looks absolutely fantastic, I do wonder how it plays though.

  • cookiesEater

    Illuminati game sorry but that's too much eyes and pyramids

  • otakuzod

    Count me in on the Samurai Jack camp. I'll certainly give this a whirl when it comes out.

  • Ninja_Blade_Diego

    The art style reminds me of the Samurai Jack series. Awesome!!!