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Fullbright's Tacoma received a gameplay overhaul, here's what it looks like now

Player interaction has been completely revamped

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.

The team from Fullbright appeared briefly on the YouTube Live at E3 show with Geoff Keighley to show off a newly revised vision for their game, Tacoma.

Co-founded by Steve Gaynor, Johnnemann Nordhagen and Karla Zimonja, Fullbright made a name for itself with the narrative exploration title Gone Home. Tacoma is a departure, trading Gone Home's '90's aesthetic for a far-flung future on an abandoned space station. Players are tasked with putting together the mystery of what happened aboard the station by piecing together the lives of the former inhabitants. The only trace of the mystery are augmented reality avatars, representing that former crew.

In March, Fullbright circulated an email signaling that Tacoma was receiving a major overhaul.

"After we did our big unveiling last summer we sent out a playtest build to a bunch of fellow developers we trust, took a long hard look at their feedback and our own feelings on where we were at, and decided to reexamine and rework a number of the core assumptions we'd held about the game," said Fullbright. The extra work pushed a potential release date back to 2017.

Since they last showed the game at E3 2015, Gaynor said that the team went back to the drawing board to completely redesign how players are able to interact with those AR characters. Chief among those changes is a fast-forward and rewind feature.

"What was more important for us was [answering the question], 'How does the player have control over this?' How can the player pull details out of this scene [and] pull pieces of the narrative out of the scene that they wouldn't be able to otherwise?"

A new sample of gameplay is embedded above. You can see us playing the first level of the game, with code we received late last year, in the video below.

Tacoma is in development for Linux, Mac, Windows PC and Xbox One.

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