Press Release

DARKNESS TO SEE LIGHT
WITH INFOGRAMES



January 25th, 1998

The INFOGRAMES ENTERTAINMENT Group continues to flex its muscles with the acquisition of another key title to further bolster its stake in the interactive entertainment market.

After a fierce bidding war fought from both sides of the Atlantic, INFOGRAMES ENTERTAINMENThas announced that Amazing Studio’s Heart of Darkness, previously funded by Virgin Interactive Entertainment, will finally be released by the Group in Summer 1998.

«The INFOGRAMES Group is extremely proud to have won the world-wide rights to publish Heart of Darkness,» said Bruno Bonnell, president of the INFOGRAMES ENTERTAINMENT group, «especially considering we once again beat some large US publishers in another bidding war for a key worldwide title.»

«True to its name, Amazing Studio has done an amazing job with Heart of Darkness.  What was a stunning title three years ago remains well ahead of its time. In fact, it is only now that technology has caught up sufficiently to allow Amazing Studio to realize their original visionary concept without compromising in any area.»

«This is an amicable deal with V.I.E who simply did not have the willing to continue to fund the game’s development.
INFOGRAMES recognizes Heart of Darkness as a real long term asset for the company and will support the game  and its potential derivative products in every way possible, once again investing heavily in a multimillion pound widespread and innovative marketing campaign.»

Amazing Studio gathers a team of « Stars » in the Industry : Eric Chahi, has designed and programmed the « unforgettable » Another World. He was also previously responsible for the artwork for Future Wars. Frédéric Savoir is the talented Megadrive programmer of Flashback. Christian Robert’s portfolio includes artwork for Flashback. Fabrice Visserot’s work to date includes artwork, music and sound effects for Flashback. Daniel Morais is the creative programmer behind the IBM PC compatible versions of Future Wars and Another World.


Face your darkest fears !

In a world just like our own lives Andy, a boy like any other. His teacher hates him. His dog adores him. The thing that really scares him is the dark...

To rescue his doggy pal, Whisky, snatched away by the Forces of Darkness, Andy must face his darkest fears in a secret kingdom, a world of soul-hungry phantoms, bed- time demons with manic monsters and bizarre friends.

Only YOU can control Andy’s destiny, hold back the forces of evil and ultimately confront the sinister Master of Darkness.

You will climb, swing, twist, swim and shoot your way through a world filled with mystical mazes, exotic landscapes and evil enemies. You fight head on within 8 huge levels splits in around 180 screens inhabited by The Shades and The Dark Souls.  This is a land where your childhood nightmares become a reality...

«Our goal in creating Heart of Darkness was to take gaming to a new level of sophistication,» said Eric Chahi. «We didn’t want our images to look like hi-tech 3D computer images, but more like natural backgrounds closer to a painting than hyper realistic rendering, and for characters, something closer to cartoons»

According to Catherine Simon, Vice-president of the I-Heroes Studio, « the best way to describe Heart of Darkness is that it’s more like an interactive animated film than anything else. Our European test center is unanimous : it is the best platform game they’ve ever played ».

Heart of Darkness is rendered using 3D Studio and relies on traditional computer animation. Andy, the hero, has more than 2,000 frames of animation in one direction alone which allows seamless transitions between actions. This mixing of transitions results in
a greater and smoother level of interaction.

The game, with its gorgeous environments, varied puzzles and strong story-line, draws the player in and keeps him hooked until the very end, making it challenging and fun to play.

The Heart of Darkness’ thrill-laden ambience is further augmented by an atmospheric musical score composed by the renowned Bruce Broughton (whose films credits include Young Sherlock Holmes, Silverado, Rescuers Down Under, Miracle on 34th Street, Tombstone, Baby’s Day Out, So, I married an Axe Murderer, ...) and recorded by the Sinfonia of London with 55 musicians.


Non-stop intense action

- Movie-like: over 30 minutes of cinematics which fluidly merge with the gameplay.   

- A huge diversity of environments, encouraging the player to find out what’s next and which demand a variety of tactics.  

- Thrilling story-line with lovable characters with a great sense of humour.  

- Incredible gameplay coming from controlling the action of the hero at every frame. Innovative interactions between enemies and Andy.  

- Original score composed by Bruce Broughton and recorded by a full symphonic orchestra.  

- Dedicated sound effects specially created by famous sound designers (whose credits include The Bear, Nikita, The Mahabarata...)  

- Extraordinary high-quality sound system allowing to output 16 stereo channels.  

- Rich detail, perfect in every way: shadows calculated and distorted in real time, specially created textures, and for Andy’s animation, around 2000 images only in one direction...  



"Heart of Darkness" created by Amazing Studio
Produced by Ocean & Amazing Studio 
Distributed by Infogrames

Type of game: Action Adventure platform 
To be released on: Sony PlayStation, Windows 95/98 & Windows NT 4.0/5.0 
One language master: French, English, German and Japanese 
Target audience: from 8 years old and over... for the whole family 
Release Date: Summer 1998


Visit the official Heart of Darkness Web site at: http://www.heartofdarkness.com 
 
For further information, please contact Christelle Gesler, tel. (33) (0)4 72 65 50 11
e-mail: cgesler@infogrames.com


For further information, please contact Catherine Louvier, Press Information Coordination tel. (33) (0)4 72 65 50 86
e-mail: clouvier@infogrames.com