Fares and Hazelight’s last game, A Way Out was notable for changing how players interacted with the game throughout the story, and It Takes Two builds on that idea: “I think it’s going to go to the world record with a huge amount of variation we have in the mechanics. And there are reasons to it as well.”“We really need to look closer on how the mechanics are connected to the story,” Fares continues, “and I really, truly believe that in [other] narrative games, sometimes designers and writers are [making] two different games. We need to drop the idea of the old thing where you learn your mechanic and blah, blah, blah, you get better. That’s old design rules. I don’t care about them. They could function and work in another game but, in story experiences, you have to have the [game] and the narrative meld together. This is what we’re trying to do. Everything the characters are seeing, or interacting with, or encountering is part of the gameplay.”
Even in the two-minute trailer, we see multiple settings and activities, one after another, and Fares is very clear on the point that this is the feeling throughout the game – and it’s been a force of will to make that happen: “The variation of the gameplay is important, both for the story but also to keep the player invested, so you feel that you don’t lose interest – you’re a part of it. I mean, how many games don’t you feel like, ‘I’ve done this so many times. This is enough’?
It Takes Two Game Awards Trailer Screenshots
“The designers have gone totally nuts. I push them so hard, like, ‘Come on, let’s do this. We can do this. Let’s do this, let’s do that.’ And sometimes they tell me, ‘Josef, this thing will take us four or five months to make and we only use it for these two minutes.’ But for me it’s the same argument as saying, ‘Oh, we have such a cool scene in this movie. Let’s reuse this exact scene over there.’ No, it doesn’t make sense. It would make it even less special, so we have to start letting go of old ideas on how we look at games.”
The upshot is that It Takes Two will seemingly be a far meatier experience than most narrative games of its kind. “It’s going to be a long one,” Fares tells me. “Yeah, like we’re talking 14, 15 hours of unique madness […] I’m telling you, looking at how much content is crammed into this game is crazy.”
Fares, as you might expect from his past interviews, is pretty enthusiastic about the project, and makes very clear that he and his studio have built something unique: “We’ve been working really hard with this for three years, and damn, it will be an experience. Let me tell you that. You will be mindf**ked. I know I’m confident, but you play this game and tell me not to be confident. I’m telling you, you have not experienced anything like this.”
It Takes Two will be released on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and PC on March 26, 2021.