Adr1ft the upcoming exploration game from developer Three One Zero, has been hit with a delay. Originally slated to come out sometime before the end of this month, the game will now launch in the first calendar quarter (January – March) of 2016 after Oculus approached Three One Zero and publisher 505 Games with the idea of making it a launch game for the company’s upcoming PC based virtual reality device Oculus Rift.
The delay was announced in a tweet from the game’s official account, reading “Hand selected by Oculus, ADR1FT will launch day and date with Oculus Rift in Q1 2016.” In addition to the PC, the game is also coming to Xbox One and PlayStation 4, though there’s been no word on whether it will also be compatible with PlayStation VR, Sony’s virtual reality device also due out next year. The release dates for the console versions “will be announced in the future”.
President of 505 Games Ian Howe claimed that the delay will result in an improved game, saying “virtual reality is the next phase of innovation in gaming. As a publisher, we’re always looking for the best platforms and technology to showcase our games and working with Oculus will allow gamers to experience ADR1FT in an enhanced way that only can be done through the immersion of virtual reality”. Lead developer Adam Orth was similarly enthusiastic, saying “we couldn’t be more pleased to work directly with the Oculus team to bring ADR1FT to the Oculus Rift. The excitement we’ve seen from our fans around ADR1FT VR and the groundbreaking technology of the Oculus Rift is a special combination; short of actually being in space, this is the best way to experience zero gravity.”
Adr1ft tells the story of an astronaut attempting to survive on a space station as it falls apart around him, utilising exploration based gameplay similar to games such as Gone Home, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter and Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture. The plot is meant to symbolise the isolation felt by Orth after the internet furore that erupted surrounding his Twitter feed back in early 2013. Orth, at the time an employee of Microsoft, received considerable criticism following a tweet that read “Sorry, I don’t get the drama around having an ‘always on’ console. Every device now is ‘always on’. That’s the world we live in. #dealwithit”. This tweet came before the announcement of the Xbox One’s universally unpopular DRM policies but after enough rumours hinting towards them appeared that the gaming community was nervous. Orth’s tweet, as well as his dismissive response to queries about such a system’s effect on people in areas without a stable internet connection (“Why on earth would I live there?”), struck a nerve. Microsoft quickly dismissed Orth, neglecting to mention at the time that he was just peddling the company line a few months too early, and went on to announce the desperately unpopular policies regardless. The explosive response from fans prompted the company to quickly go back on these policies, but Orth was still left high and dry, unemployed and subject to a stream of abuse on social media. Adr1ft is Orth’s attempt to present that feeling of isolation now that the dust has cleared.