From ARVORE, the Emmy Award-winning studio behind The Line and the critically acclaimed Pixel Ripped series, comes YUKI—an upbeat mix of the bullet hell and roguelike genres like only VR can deliver. It launches July 22 at a price of $19.99 USD, and you can pre-order for the Oculus Quest Platform now for a 10% discount plus 48 hours of early access.
In YUKI, you’ll enter a kid’s wild imagination and fly through multi-dimensional worlds by controlling an action figure using your hands. Move your body to dodge bullets and obstacles while fighting evil forces that want to control the universe in this challenging game where each defeat is just another step closer to victory.
YUKI offers a unique VR blend of the Bullet Hell and Roguelike genres. Both are known for their difficulty, but YUKI is designed to be accessible and enjoyable by everyone. Starting out as a “pick-up-and-play” experience, it quickly grows into a very challenging and strategic game. The player will feel their power progression through a workshop where they can upgrade their action-figure to face the increasing challenges. Sharpening their skills against hordes of enemies and challenging boss fights, each run will get the player closer to victory, while unlocking new Bladewing weapons and more and more power-ups.
We sat down with Kako, creative director of the game, as he shared a bit of his childhood with us, and how it influenced his work on YUKI.
YUKI is a game that makes us play through a child’s imagination. How do you remember your own childhood?
Kako: I remember a great lot of friends around. We lived in a building complex, and give or take, there were probably 30 kids driving the whole neighborhood crazy.
I grew up in the early ’80s, so the toy/cartoon combo hit us pretty hard, and the number of toys we could amass to play with was unbelievable. We built cities and waged wars between our beds. We traveled through time and flew across universes before dinner time. The garden was a dark jungle our toys had to brave, and every time we went to someone’s apartment, we left one or two toys in the fridge inside a container with water so they could get frozen and be rescued by other toys the day after. There was always so much play, so much fun when we were all together.
What were the challenges of bringing the bullet hell genre to VR? How did the game evolve during development?
Kako: We always had in our minds, “How can we innovate and still be truthful to the original source of inspiration?” To answer that question, we looked for something we could use that we wouldn’t find in any original bullet hell game. So we focused on the VR environment and the player’s spatial awareness, taking the genre a step further by making the player explore body movement and a new sense of perspective. VR is a different kind of environment, and we worked a lot to allow people to react properly to it from this new angle while keeping the connection with the heart of the genre.
Another challenge was to build a game that could allow us future expansions, so we explored the roguelike aspect of the game, building it in a way that we will be able to add new content without risking the gameplay, with the players always having a way to try something new. We have plenty of material for the players to have fun on this release and a lot of new stuff in the making for the future.
How was the world of YUKI created? What’s the story, and where did the concept come from?
Kako: YUKI is about a kid who loves this anime and spends all of her spare time playing with her favorite action figure, the anime’s main character, Yuki. This is a story about how our imagination can go further than we ever expected when we connect with something we love. Personally I believe the beauty of YUKI is how we tied the core fantasy with the genre through the use of environmental storytelling and other narrative tools. We couldn’t go too deep into the story to protect the game's pacing, but we also wanted to be able to share all of our rich worldbuilding. So we worked with this balance of how much we want to give you and how much we want you to imagine for yourself, giving you the opportunity of having your own sense of what’s happening around you.
What’s next for ARVORE?
Kako: We have two new projects in development for Quest already! Both are amazing projects, just like YUKI, and trust me when I say that ARVORE is very excited about them. We’ll share more info about these projects soon, so stay tuned!
Pre-order YUKI now to get 10% off the purchase price, plus 48 hours of early access before the game’s July 22 release date. Visit yukivrgame.com for more information. You can also join the ARVORE Discord channel or follow YUKI on Twitter and Instagram.