Hi-Fi Rush Had an Internal Cult Following at Bethesda Before It Was Even Pitched
The potential was obvious early on.
Hi-Fi Rush is the new hotness that everyone’s been talking about over this past week. It was surprise released last week, unveiled as a new rhythm action game from Tango Gameworks, best known for releasing The Evil Within and 2022’s Ghostwire Tokyo. Hi-Fi Rush was definitely a huge surprise drop, and it’s already getting tons of praise for its innovative mechanics.
Game creator and director John Johanas spoke with MinnMax in an interview this week to talk about the origins of the game and the pitching process, which you can check out in its entirety down below.
Johanas mentioned that he when coming up with the core concept, he wanted to create a rhythm action game that was both accessible and felt good to play. He brought up comparisons to indie darling Crypt of the Necrodancer, a game that was all about moving and attacking to the beat, but also mentioned how the game would punish you if you weren’t able to actually stick to the beat.
Hi-Fi Rush is different in a key way: when you attack, your hits will always land on the beat. You’ll be rewarded for properly timing your hits of course, but the point was that the game would feel good and satisfying to play no matter what.
When talking about the pitching process, Johanas mentioned that he’d decided to work on a prototype, a proof of concept, before properly pitching it to Bethesda. After spending some time designing the UI, the core action mechanics, and various levels, the prototype build itself actually started to gain some traction among Bethesda employees. It had garnered quite a bit of buzz within the company itself, and Johanas describes it as a sort of “internal cult following” before he had even officially pitched it to Bethesda.
This definitely worked in his favor, as by the time he was ready to pitch, the higher-ups at Bethesda had already heard about the game, which undoubtedly made the pitching process go a little smoother.
Hi-Fi Rush is now available on PC and Xbox.
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