With Hideo Kojima off making his game about Norman Reedus cradling dolls in the abyss, and Konami busy working on the zombie-addled Metal Gear Survive, it is up to someone else to carry the torch forward for tactical, espionage, action gaming.
Related: check out these upcoming PC games.
Enter Square Enix’s freshly announced Left Alive, a survival action shooter set in a bleak, future dystopia where a war is raging and giant mecha are doing the bulk of the fighting. It is also set in the universe of the Front Mission series so those mecha should technically be called Wanzers. Better still, the development team for Left Alive includes veteran names from series like Metal Gear, Armored Core, Ghost in the Shell, and Mobile Suit Gundam - Left Alive is in good hands.
But what exactly is Left Alive? We have scoured the internet for every available detail in order to give you the fullest answer possible.
Left Alive release date
When will you be able to play Left Alive? Square Enix have not revealed an exact Left Alive release date, but they have promised it will be out in 2018. Given the ambiguity of that release date and the roughness of the gameplay in the trailers, it is likely that Left Alive is still early into its development - do not expect to be playing it come springtime.
Left Alive trailers
But enough talk, here are a couple of Left Alive trailers to whet your appetite for the Wanzer-based adventures to come.
First up is the Left Alive announcement trailer which, while scant on details, offers an atmospheric peek at the gritty Front Mission universe that the game will be set in. Give it a watch below.
If you are after a glimpse of the gameplay, and what could be one of Left Alive’s three protagonists, then the TGS 2017 trailer below will serve you well.
Left Alive gameplay
Good news if you like piloting mecha - sorry, we meant Wanzers - sneaking through derelict buildings, and third-person shootouts: Left Alive lets you do all three. Not at the same time, obviously, that would be mad. Nope, in Left Alive you choose how you want to approach each mission, whether that means silently taking down every target or bulldozing through them with a shotgun. You will also be able to pilot Wanzers, although they mainly appear as minibosses for you to defeat.
At its core, however, Left Alive is to be a tactical-RPG, with some survival and crafting systems layered on top. Traps have also been promised, along with features that will be available once the game has been beaten to give you a reason to replay it.
We also know that you will rotate between three protagonists - each of whom is stranded in a different area of the war-ravaged city Left Alive is set in - as you progress through the campaign. In terms of mission structure, Left Alive will feature levels rather than an open world, although levels will have multiple means of reaching the end destination, depending on your preferred approach - loud or quiet. You can also make use of traps to cover your flank or create chaos across the battlefield.
Left Alive characters
All three Left Alive characters are front and centre on the game’s gorgeous promotional art. Given its style, it should be unsurprising to find out the art is the work of Metal Gear character designer Yoji Shinkawa. Only one of the characters actually makes an appearance in the two trailers currently available - that is his gruff mug pictured above - and we have no names or backgrounds for any of the three playable Left Alive characters at the time of writing.
Left Alive setting
Left Alive shares its universe with the Front Mission series, which imagines a future where globalisation takes place at an accelerated pace, breaking down a number of national boundaries and spawning massive blocs of power. Those blocs naturally end up competing in a space race that spills over into an arms race - war ensues.
Within the Front Mission timeline, Left Alive takes place in 2127, between the events of Front Mission 5 and Front Mission Evolved. The dilapidated city you see in the trailers is in Russia. It is here that the story of Left Alive unfolds. Expect lots of confined, urban combat with plenty of opportunities for sneaking.
That is all we know about Left Alive at the moment, but we will be updating this page as and when new information about this survival action shooter crops up - stay tuned.