Espire 2 Launches Today Bringing Award-winning First-person Stealth VR Experience to Meta Quest 2
Developer Digital Lode Immersive Media and Publisher Tripwire Presents Deploy Virtual Reality Stealth “Sneak-quel” with New Singleplayer and Co-op Campaigns
ROSWELL, Ga. – Nov. 17, 2022 – Today, developer Digital Lode Immersive Media and publisher Tripwire Presents announced the launch of Espire 2, the highly anticipated sequel to Espire 1: VR Operative, the top-selling, award-winning, first-person stealth virtual reality (VR) title. Built from the ground-up to once again raise the bar for the stealth genre in VR, Espire 2 finds players take on the role of Espire Agent POE, piloting remote-operated espionage frames as they sneak and shoot their way through a brand-new globe-trotting singleplayer campaign full of mysteries and surprises. In addition, players can look forward to a series first with the introduction of multiplayer co-op. Espire 2 launches today at 10 a.m. (Pacific Standard Time) on the Meta Store with a MSRP of $29.99 USD for Meta Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro devices.
“On behalf of the entire team at Digital Lode, we’d like to thank our partners at Tripwire Presents and Meta, and most importantly, the passionate fans of Espire 1: VR Operative for the opportunity to create this dream sequel,” said Michael Wentworth-Bell, Game Director and Founder at Digital Lode. “With Espire 2, we’ve created a true stealth experience designed from the ground up specifically for VR. This is a game where every interaction has been carefully crafted with the goal to give players an immersive experience as a super spy in a way that’s only possible in VR. We’re already working on additional content for Espire 2 and hope players enjoy the game.”
In the world of Espire 2, advanced military and virtual reality technologies meet, allowing Espire Agents to take on the role of a super spy, piloting deadly Espire espionage frames remotely from the safety of the Control Theatre. Set in the year 2036, Espire 2 marks the return of Espire Agent POE (the Primary Operator of Espire). After emerging from a seven-year coma, POE finds themself thrust into the world of espionage once again, this time on the hunt to stop the deadly terrorist organization OPHIS in a singleplayer campaign with missions that span the globe. The multiplayer co-op campaign takes place two years prior. Two new Espire operatives must return to Espire 1’s Pleione Base to follow a trail of intel that kicks off the events of Espire 2. Co-op players can choose between two specialized Espire frames: Sinder is a turbo-charged redesign of the original Espire model 1, while Sooty is a more compact frame, capable of navigating through smaller spaces, armed with a wide array of cutting-edge gear and gadgets to sneak past guards.
“With Espire 2, Digital Lode has improved the super-immersive stealth action game they made with Espire 1 in every way,” said Brian Etheridge, Publishing Director at Tripwire Presents. “They are huge fans of VR gaming themselves, so they added everything they wanted to see in the sequel. Getting to choose how you take on missions with an all-new playable character in a massive singleplayer campaign that takes players around the world was a great start… and then they added an entire co-op campaign!”
Espire 2 Key Features:
- Multiplayer Co-op campaign: Team up with a fellow operative in a co-op campaign that bridges the gap between Espire 1: VR Operative and Espire 2.
- Control Multiple Espire frames: For the first time, players can control and switch between two unique Espire frames. Each frame is suited with their own special abilities and attributes, offering strategic benefits to discover while playing through both campaigns.
- Unique Gadgets: The player’s entire array of tools and gadgets are now fully integrated into the Espire frames, offering a vast variety of accessible options for handling objectives.
- Rule the Play Area: Espire Vision gives Agents a strategic, accessible view of the situation, allowing players to see through walls, mark the location of enemies, predict patrol paths, and more.
- Voice Commands: Utilize voice commands to distract, hold-up, and interrogate the enemy. Interrogation commands include “empty your pockets” and “where are your friends?” Espire 2 can also be played without voice commands if players prefer.
- Cutting Edge Graphics and Spatial Audio: Espire 2 boasts next generation VR graphics and spatial audio systems that will take full advantage of the power of the Meta Quest 2.
- Stealth AI System: The stealth AI system has been rebuilt from the ground up with a focus on core stealth mechanics, enemy engagements, and player agency, bringing even more depth to gameplay options.
- Immersion and Presence: Thanks to Espire 2’s accurate “arm IK” system, players see their virtual forearms where their real ones would be and experience VR interactions in lifelike detail.
- Enhanced Control Theatre: The technology behind the “Control Theatre” lies at the heart of the movement and control system. Utilizing the Meta Quest 2’s additional rendering capabilities, the innovative “Control Theatre” comfort system makes its return in Espire 2 with enhanced features, a new user interface, and easier accessibility. This “VR within VR” system allows for precise full freedom of movement, maintains immersion, and also eliminates “VR motion sickness” for almost all players. The Control Theatre is fully customizable to suit the player’s level of comfort, up to fully disabled for those already comfortable moving in VR.
For more information on Digital Lode and to stay up to date on the latest news for Espire 2, be sure to visit the Meta Store page – and follow the developers on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.
About Digital Lode
Founded in 2017, Digital Lode is an award-winning VR game developer based in Melbourne, Australia. Their first title, Espire 1: VR Operative was released in 2019 to critical acclaim, setting the new gold standard for the stealth-action genre in virtual reality. Espire 1’s success, combined with the partnerships forged with Tripwire Presents + Meta, has allowed Digital Lode to expand their resources, tripling the size of their studio. Now Digital Lode aims to make the VR sequel of the dreams a reality with Espire 2 for the Meta Quest 2.
Digital Lode is an ambitious team committed to making best-in-class games in Virtual Reality. Connected by their passion for immersive media, the team shares, shows and plays what they create and possess limitless curiosity to discover and invent new out-of-the-box ways in which players can experience their games. Learn more about Digital Lode at http://thelode.com.au and applicants interested in joining the team can reach out to email@example.com.
About Tripwire Interactive
Formed in 2005 as a humble independent developer founded by gamers who found success in the video game modding community, Tripwire Interactive has developed and self-published multiple critically acclaimed titles in the wildly popular Killing Floor and Rising Storm franchises, which have collectively sold over 20 million units to date. The studio’s latest project, Maneater, breaks new ground in the popular action RPG genre and finds players taking on the role of a deadly shark with the uncanny ability to evolve as it feeds.
Since then, Tripwire Interactive has expanded its business with the publishing division, Tripwire Presents, turning its experience and resources to include publishing titles spanning multiple platforms and genres from other talented independent studios. Tripwire Presents aims to help like-minded independent studios bring their titles to market, including Chivalry 2 developed by Torn Banner Studios, Espire 1: VR Operative and Espire 2 developed by Digital Lode, DECEIVE INC. developed by Sweet Bandits Studios and Road Redemption developed by EQ Games and Pixel Dash Studios. Tripwire Presents continues to grow their portfolio, and are always on the lookout for the next great team and game. Inquiries and pitches can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org, or submitted through their publishing application form.
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