Hellblade’s first gameplay trailer gives us a glimpse at the game’s focus on mental illness

Ninja Theory has pulled the curtain back on the first gameplay trailer for Hellblade, their Celtic swordfighting game, a few days ahead of this year’s E3 Expo. The developers also revealed that Senua, Hellblade’s main character, isn’t just fighting back against a viking invasion, she’s also battling mental demons in her own personal Hell:

The Hell in question is no ordinary Hell, but is in fact a Hell that is the manifestation of Senua’s mental illness. Senua experiences psychosis, including hallucinations and delusions, as well as suffering from anxiety and depression. As a player you will witness Senua’s living nightmare through her own eyes.

The developers from Ninja Theory believe they are approaching this subject with the respect it deserves. To that end, Ninja Theory has secured the services of Professor Paul Fletcher, a professor of Health Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge, to guarantee the accuracy of their portrayal. They’ve also teamed with the Wellcome Trust, “a global charitable foundation which aims to build a greater public understanding of science and in particular health.” The final piece of the puzzle will be a series of interviews with individuals suffering from mental illness. Ninja Theory will use their experiences to help shape Senua’s personality and actions.

Hellblade will be available for the PC and PS4 sometime in 2016. A Developer Diary discussing their work with Professor Fletcher can be found after the break.

[Source: Hellblade Development Blog]

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John Scalzo is Warp Zoned's Editor-In-Chief and resident retro gaming expert. You can follow him on Twitter or email him at john AT warpzoned DOT com.

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