Today, we’re proud to present an exclusive inside look at Movers in Paradise, our brand-new DLC for Moving Out that offers 14 new story levels, 10 new arcade levels and four exclusive new characters. Also washing ashore are a number of new features, including: ziplines, vines and everyone’s favourite, the disgruntled goat! Movers in Paradise will be available on PlayStation 4 (and playable on PS5) from Thursday February 25.
Read on to find out more about some of the design secrets that went into creating this new paradise – and the challenges within it.
Welcome to Packmore Island
In this busy world of bustle and beepers, there has never been a better time to slow… the… beat… down… We ask you to wave pavement and asphalt goodbye, to sail into paradise as we welcome you to Packmore Island!
It’s likely you’ve never heard of this tiny, remote rock – and why would you? It’s been hidden beyond the mist of the great beyond for time immemorial. Well, not quite. But one can dream… In fact, that’s just how Packmore Island came to be. From concept to creation – here’s how Packmore Island sprang to life.
An exotic isle playground
In this tropical setting of soothing sounds and picturesque coastal calm, you’ll explore sights never before seen by Mover or beast alike. From cliff faces that stretch down beyond the depths of your imagination, to chasms that defy your sense of space and time, our beaches will beg you to sit and be still and our caves will beckon you with hidden delights.
When it comes to creating games, there’s a delicate balance between gameplay and art; we have to make sure that the art supports the gameplay, rather than getting in the way of the fun! To example this, here’s one level that sees our Movers work through a gorgeous, waterfall-filled location.
If you look at the concept art above, we had some really cool-looking waterfalls flowing from the top of the level. When it came down to it though, these elements blocked a lot of the play area, compromising visibility for the players. So many of our testers were falling off the edge into the water-filled cavern below and that wasn’t fun at all! So though they looked cool, they actually detracted from the level experience.
At the end of the day, all the elements of the game need to work together to create the best experience for the player. We always want to keep the FUN, so sometimes cool-looking things don’t make the cut. The silver lining here is that Art and Design just work even more closely together to come up with super creative solutions!
Packmore Island also gave us a great opportunity to adapt Moving Out’s wacky physics for water-based challenges.
There were lots of funny tests with rafts that behaved in less than perfect ways. Some were too floaty; some not floaty enough. Some launched into outer space and some just didn’t float at all. But in the end we got it jusssst right! The perfect balance to create your own safe platforms and pathways to keep that furniture (and your tiny mover feet) dry.
Curious creatures ready to tax your moving skills
In this tropical paradise, it’s not just the flora that will enchant you – the fauna also commands your attention! In its isolation, the wildlife of Packmore Island have evolved quite unique and interesting… idiosyncrasies. We’re speaking of sneaky crabs with a taste for thievery and capricious scallywag goats boasting skulls thick enough to break through stone walls (and who’ll charge inattentive movers not respecting their space). Lemurs may try to be friendly, sharing their fruit and expecting you to play fetch, but their treasure is covered in spikes and heavy enough to knock you over. (Feel free to give them a taste of their own medicine and piff that prickly fruit back at ‘em!)
We had a lot of fun inventing gamplay ideas built around our challenging yet charismatic wildlife. Take the Packmore Island’s Puffer Fish: originally you had to move reaaaaallllly slowly, in a shhhh-don’t wake the baby, kind of way – you don’t want to startle them! Then we had a revelation (which is obvious in hindsight…) Moving slowly is not at all what Moving Out is all about! We pivoted, and now you have to throw the puffer before it gets too big and spikes you! Hopefully your moving buddy is there to catch it before it hits the ground and pops!
We had a similar breakthrough with the goats. In the beginning they were really just an annoyance, charging movers and knocking them about, but we wanted to find a way to harness their energy for good. That’s when we thought to give their charge the ability to break walls. It spawned a whole level in fact! Thanks to that simple tweak, players can lure a goat to charge. Coupled with a well-timed sidestep on nimble mover feet, players can forge new pathways to otherwise unreachable areas. Go forth, you intrepid explorer!
Geysers, scubas, and more
Now sampling the local fruit isn’t the only way to reach great heights – you can fly sky high on state-of-the-art Geyser Transportation SystemTM or hop a ride on free-range Scuba Tanks. Originally introduced to help control the local Fire Extinguisher problem, they’ve become a beast of their own, running rampant on our lands. Not that there are many people to notice, mind you.
On that note, if you do happen to spot any shipwrecks, plane crashes or ancient ruins, please feel free to tell no one and kindly not report us to the Island Health and Safety Minister. That lot gives us a hard enough time already.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this of our new DLC! Please enjoy your stay on Packmore Island, a realm unparalleled in this world of Movers and shakers.