Double Fine has released an extended look at Psychonauts 2. The video is the “first playable” milestone of the game’s development. Here’s the official description, via Fig:
The “First Playable” is an area of the game that we’ve built to test our new pipelines and workflows across all departments — art, animation, tech, design, cinematics, etc. We’ve tested all of this a lot during pre-production, but this is our first big attempt to create a fully arted up, fully playable chunk of gameplay with all the systems, art, gameplay, and tech working in the same place. You may see other teams refer to something like this as a “Vertical Slice” , though we don’t use this terminology because it tends to imply a level of polish and completeness that isn’t really required at this stage of production.
This doesn’t mean that we now have a final area made to shippable quality, there’s still a lot of work to be done. It does however represent a fully playable area that has all the things a level of the game should have: elements like player movement, combat, quests, experience, UI all working together with scratch dialogue and audio, some rough visual effects, textures, lighting, even a cut-scene. This means we can iterating on these systems so they can be as good as possible for the final game.
Psychonauts 2 is set to release in 2018 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.