I hadn’t heard of Drawn to Death in my PAX preparations, but the sign above the demo stations caught my attention. The scribble-style art that would look right at home on a high school student’s notebook looked as though it might have pretty cool game beneath it. And while the art style is intriguing, the game does’t seem very unique.
Turns out Drawn to Death is the most recent outing of David Jaffe and Sony Santa Monica. Jaffe is probably best known for creating the original God of War. Drawn to Death is an arena shooter with some very mature and gory elements despite the hand-drawn art style. Like current shooters on the market, there are a number of crazy character to choose from and variety of weapons as well.
The mode I played was called “Organ Donor.” The goal was to collect hearts and deposit them in specified containers. The only way to collect hearts is by killing your opponents. And these are not the kind of hearts you would expect. Rather than the simple shape, Drawn to Death’s hearts look like anatomically correct hearts, complete with pulsing blood. It was hard to get a good feel for the characters and weapons in the course of one game, but they seemed pretty standard as far as I can tell.
One of my opponents had a grenade that looked like a classic gaming console and exploded into a swarm of 8-bit art. One thing that the game has going for it is its sense of humor. It’s obvious from the start that Drawn to Death is over-the-top on purpose. It will be interesting to see if it can enter the arena shooter space and succeed.
Drawn to Death will be a PlayStation 4 exclusive and is slated for release later this year.