A version of this article previously appeared on TechNode.
The announcement shows Tencent’s ambition to create more AAA titles (an informal classification system used to categorize blockbuster games) based on original works.
Tencent said during the release event that the title will be available worldwide “in the near future.”
Tencent’s LightSpeed Studios will oversee the creation of Code: To Jin Yong. The studio was also behind the development of the global hit PUBG Mobile.
The new title will be an open-world game in which players explore ancient China, with appearances from popular martial arts characters featured in Jin Yong’s books, such as Yang Guo and Qiao Feng.
Demonstrated by the fight scenes in the trailer, the title is powered by Unreal Engine 5, a highly-rated game engine that offers good rendering quality and will enable developers to recreate intricate martial arts movements.
One particularly praiseworthy element of the game is the immersive, digitalized version of Mount Hua recreated by the game studio. In real life, the iconic mountain in Northwest China’s Shaanxi province is known for its challenging hikes and long history of religious significance.
The studio used a technology called photogrammetry to scan pictures and real-life scenes of the mountain.
The game may compete with Black Myth: Wukong, another promising upcoming title based on Chinese myths and characters. Developed by Chinese game firm Game Science, Black Myth follows the legendary character Sun Wukong (or The Monkey King), the protagonist in the Chinese classical novel Journey to the West.
Often compared to iconic fantasy author J.R.R. Tolkien, Jin Yong, also known as Louis Cha, was a legendary writer who produced a vast literary collection of martial arts fantasies. Jin was one of the world’s bestselling authors and is hugely popular in the Chinese-speaking world. He passed away at 94 in 2018.
Code: To Jin Yong will be the first video game adapted from Jin’s novels. The video game is authorized by Ming Ho Publications, which owns the rights to Jin’s works.
With hundreds of popular fictional martial arts characters in Jin’s novels, it’s possible for Chinese game developers to create serial projects and develop them into an expansive video game universe.
All images via Twitter
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