Sifu is, in a few ways, a bit of an unlikely follow-up to Absolver.
Slocalp, the French team behind the unique martial arts fighting game Absolver, is moving away from online games with its next project, Sifu. Revealed last week at Sony’s State of Play, Sifu is a story-based, martial arts action game.
Just in case it wasn’t clear in the trailer, Sifu does not have an online component, which isn’t exactly where fans expected the studio to go next. Speaking to PC Gamer, executive producer Pierre Tarno explained that the team opted for an entirely single-player game for its follow-up in order to “put all the development efforts in the gameplay” and not split the team’s efforts into creating online play.
Sloclap also wanted to recreate the fantasy of being one person taking on an army, with nothing but pure martial arts skill at your disposal. “Absolver was very much 1-v-1,” he explained.
“The fantasy we want is that sort of Jackie Chan movie fantasy where it’s one versus many.”
In Sifu, you play as kung-fu student on quest for revenge. Our hero is going after five assassins responsible for murdering his family, and he’s going to cut through their goons to get to them.
As seen in the trailer, the protagonist does age with every death. Tarno, however, hinted that this isn’t quite a rogue-like in the ways we imagine, but did not elaborate further.
The moves in the trailer are inspired by the Lao Siu Leung Pak Mei school of Kung Fu, which the game’s creative director actually studies in real life. Tarno explained that while Absolver’s deep moveset customisation and building tools would not return, your moves in Sifu will evolve over time, but all of it will belong to the Pak Mei school.
More on Sifu will be revealed later this year. As for the future, Tarno said that more online-focused projects are coming, but the focus right now is on delivering a single-player action game with Sifu.