Rare is one of the most iconic and widely recognized developers in the video game industry, responsible for the creation of beloved titles such as Banjo-Kazooie, Battletoads, Goldeneye 007, and more recently, 2018’s pirate adventure game Sea of Thieves.

Continuing their dedication to cartoon animals, the studio is confirmed to be returning in 2020 with a new game called Everwild, which was officially announced at Microsoft’s X019 event in London last year. Although the game is still early in development, its Zelda: Breath of the Wild inspired visuals, and uplifting tone have many players eagerly awaiting to see what Rare has in store.

With Microsoft’s E3 2020 conference on the horizon, we can expect more to be revealed in the upcoming months. Here, we’ll be discussing the latest news and rumors surrounding Everwild, including possible release dates and supported platforms. We’ll be updating this story following any announcements from Microsoft or Rare, so make sure to check back for any new developments.

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Everwild Release Date and Platforms

It’s tough to say when exactly Everwild will be released since a large portion of Rare’s staff is already busy working on new content for Seas of Thieves. We know the game is being developed by a diverse team of industry veterans whose past credits include Fable Legends, Conker’s Bad Fur Day, Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts, and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

Judging by the scope and size suggested in the trailer, along with the timing of the announcement, the game will most likely release sometime in 2020. Considering Microsoft-published titles usually come to both Xbox One and Windows PC, we can expect Everwild to receive the same treatment. It’s also possible the game will be ported to Microsoft’s new Xbox Series X when the console launches Holiday 2020.

Everwild Story and Setting

Everwild Story and Setting

Breaking down the trailer

We currently have very little specifics regarding what story Everwild plans on telling, but taking a closer look at the game’s announcement trailer offers a bit more insight into its characters and setting. The trailer opens up with a picturesque view of a grassy field with hills and mountains in the background. An assortment of fantastical woodland creatures can be seen traveling in packs, including a species of deer-like creatures whose antlers seem to be made of leaves.

Fast-forward, and it’s revealed that this world is also shared with humans, as we can see a white-haired woman in a blue robe and a male wearing a brown tunic exploring a forest and gazing upon various creatures. Not every animal in Everwild appears to be friendly, as we get a clear shot of a mean-looking mountain lion hovering over a deer’s carcass. Considering many of the creatures appear to be biologically different from their real-life counterparts, we can safely assume Everwild is a fantasy game.

Everwild Trailer

Mood and atmosphere

The game seems to be emphasizing nature and the balance of life from a positive perspective. Also, a noticeable amount of care and attention to detail has been paid towards establishing the game’s atmosphere, which evokes feelings of wonder and peace. In a November 2019 developer news blog, Rare studio head Craig Duncan going into further detail:

“The Everwild team is focused on building an experience that allows for new ways to play in a natural and magical world. The development team, led by Executive Producer Louise O’Connor, is creating something truly original and incredibly special that aims to be more than just a new IP. Everwild will offer memorable, engaging, and meaningful experiences for players everywhere to share. We cannot wait to share more with you in the future.”

Everwild Gameplay

Everwild Gameplay

Elements of stealth and exploration

It’s still unclear how Rare intends Everwild to be played, considering it appears to be placed beyond the realm of what the studio’s known for, platformers and first-person action games. Most likely, the player will be controlling one of the human characters from the trailer as they make their way through a large open-world environment and encounter different challenges.

Going back to the trailer, we may see elements of stealth incorporated, perhaps sections where the player has to sneak past a dangerous animal without being detected. It’s too soon to tell if Everwild will feature any combat, but based on the mood of the trailer, we’re anticipating a more exploration-focused experience with a myriad of locations and animals to discover.

The Final Word on Everwild

Everwild Release Date

Having been in the video game industry for over 30 years, Rare has seen its fair share of ups and downs. Many have been critical of the company’s dip in-game quality over the years, specifically after they were acquired by Microsoft. However, if the lasting success of Sea of Thieves now two years after its launch is any indicator, it’s possible the studio is back on track. 

We’re interested to see what mysteries Everwild has to offer and how Rare plans to share it with players from a gameplay perspective. If we can be sure of one thing, it’s that the game’s idyllic environments will make for plenty of awe-inspiring in-game screenshots.

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