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Watch a very early prototype of Psychonauts 2

It looks great, and all or most of it will be thrown away

Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

Today Double Fine Productions released the first footage of an early prototype of Psychonauts 2. Fans finally know what a telekinetic acrobat looks like in the Unreal 4 engine.

The short video is shot over-the-shoulder behind Double Fine founder Tim Schafer and Psychonauts 2 lead designer Zak McClendon. It shows off some of protagonist Raz's old psychic powers as well as new ones which may end up in the game. But both stress throughout the video that everything you're seeing is simply for proof-of-concept work and will undoubtedly be scrapped before the final release.

Polygon spoke with McClendon earlier this week about the prototype project, which was handled largely by The Flame in the Flood developer Molasses Flood.

"It was fantastic to work with them," McClendon said. "I know some of them from when I was at 2K Marin working on BioShock 2 ... so we already had a good working relationship and I knew how senior they were and the sense of vision they all have together.

"It was actually really pleasant working with them because there wasn’t a lot of startup cost in terms of getting them to understand the creative direction of the game because they’re already familiar with Psychonauts, and just getting them to hit the ground running and move through all this stuff very, very quickly. ... There’s very few teams that have someone as great as they have in all departments. It’s the art director from BioShock and Infinite. It’s the lead technical animator who did everything for Elizabeth. It’s the lead level designer from BioShock Infinite and a bunch of other stuff. So it’s just a real senior group of capable people and prototyping and doing this work with them, we couldn’t have asked for a better crew to do it with."

Psychonauts 2 will be funded in part by an equity crowdfunding campaign run through Fig. You can read more about the latest on that campaign here.