It's been a year or so since it was first announced, but A Plague Tale: Innocence from Asobo Studio and Focus has intrigued me since I first saw a trailer for it. Set in 12th century France, your primary threat isn't monsters, or soldiers, or otherworldly beasts. Rather, it's rats. While in other games, rats may be level 1 monsters you kill in tutorial exercises, or part of the scenery you step on and crush as you move around, in A Plague Tale they're ferocious, deadly, and absolutely swarming.
In any given scene, there are thousands of individual rats, waiting to get hold of you. Taking control of Amicia and her young brother Hugo, keeping them safe means avoiding the swarms, using a torch to stay safe, and using clever tactics to distract them. In one particularly harrowing scene, we see a passer-by used as bait. Flinging a rock at his lantern breaks it, sending hundreds of rats towards him, who instantly devour him from the feet-up. It's 9 minutes into the gameplay video if you want to skip straight to the gory stuff.
It's dark and subdued, but from this gameplay, A Plague Tale: Innocence is looking gorgeous. The young protagonists feel real, and right from the opening scene, I can't help but care about them.
There's no set release date for A Plague Tale: Innocence just yet. It's still slated for '2019', and it'll be coming to PS4, Xbox One and PC. I'm just glad to see it making progress. If you want more detail, do go and check out Julian's hands-on with an earlier build from 2017.