Yesterday, Wednesday July 13, we were lucky enough to attend the presentation in Madrid of Endling – Extinction is Forever for Nintendo Switch. Created by the Spanish studio Herobeat Studios and published by HandyGames, we are facing an adventure with a strong reflective component on climate changethe survival of the species, the effects of a dystopian future that increasingly seems to be more real and the struggle not to disappear from the face of the Earth of a fox and her cubs.
Video games against climate change
To talk of Endling – Extinction is Forever We must go back to 2017, when Javier Ramello and Pablo Hernández founded Herobeat Studios in order to send a message through video games. In this case, the first message was addressed to a very current problem that unfortunately seems more and more unstoppable, the climate crisis and its impact on future generations of humans and animals.
Inspired by Shelter and Inside, in its beginnings this adventure is not as we know it, and in fact at the beginning it took too many elements from Inside and was more like a survival simulator than the game with the powerful narrative that we have known. At some point in development, the team began to feel more inspired about how to deal with the problem of the climate crisis, thus considering the idea of a game starring a fox and her three puppies. An animal that is not at the top of the food chain, but it is not at the bottom either. An agile animal possessing intelligence above many species, but not a real threat to being human.
What have we done?
This is how we arrived at our current adventure. It’s the year 2050 In a world where we try but fail. Our own actions have led us to an ecological disaster from which there is no turning back and now all that matters is survival. However, even when we should be more united, we see how it is that certain groups of power are hell-bent on making a profit and going until the end comes. In this story, our protagonist will see the world from a unique perspective, and over time she will see how it is that the scenarios with which she interacted, and that were once a safe haven, They are degrading and changing due to human activity.
This story is named ending, the word used to refer to the last survivors of a species before its extinction. And yes, just as you are thinking, our protagonist and her puppies are the ending of his kind. Survival is the most important thing and for this we must use the cloak of the night and guard against the dangers of the day. From humans who seek us out for our skin to predators, apparently there is no safe place to goand the life of each puppy is important.
During the conception phase of Endling we did a lot of research and put together a lot of scientifically based indicators of what our planet and human society will be like in the future if we keep doing what we’re doing now.
Yes… puppies can dieand each death not only means being one step closer to the extinction of our species, it also implies deprive us of the skills they have learned or would have learned. Skills that would have made our fight for survival just a little easier and would have helped us revisit some scenarios to find new areas with valuable resources.
As you can see, the message that the game wants to convey to us is clear, and for this, interactivity is chosen in a narrative that is very powerful on a visual level. The game is not intended to be a documentary and on some occasions we will see the occasional ray of hope, but it is also somewhat crude in showing us how it is that at some point we try to avoid everything that is happening, but we fail.
if you want to try Endling – Extinction is Foreveryou will have it available on Nintendo Switch from the next July 19. Personally, I’d recommend giving it a try as it’s a fun game with an accessible difficulty, though I do warn you may need to have a box of tissues handy.
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