Virtual Reality

Build a richer spy world

The third I Expect You To Die game, Cog In The Machine, is on the way and we’ve been working on its first puzzles.

Schell developers are looking to create a richer world for the I Expect You To Die series with more story and depth supporting their particular brand of puzzle. The effort really kicked off with 2021’s Spy And The Liar as Wil Wheaton voiced antagonist John Juniper in the sequel to the 2016 original. In our reviewwe noted the expanded scope of the series and announced that we would be looking forward to what Schell will do to expand it further with I Expect You To Die 3:

In many virtual worlds, it’s easy to feel like your surroundings are a creation of paper-thin cardboard, but the detailing in I Expect You To Die 2 pushes that notion completely out of reality to provide a rock-solid sense of total transport.

Elsewhere, the studio is still expanding its premier multiplayer VR experience, Among Us VRwith new content, and Until you fall explore active single-player gameplay. The I Expect You To Die series, however, builds on a successful formula of spy-themed puzzles that both surprise and frustrate players on a retry path through unexpected traps.

In case you’re unfamiliar, each level of an I Expect You To Die game places you in a new spy-themed setting. There are fast moving vehicles and burglaries, masks, lasers, poison and the constant threat of unexpected plots to kill you. You progress through levels by trial and error – surrounded by objects you can telekinetically pull towards you to examine them up close. Typically, you just throw it in a pile and start playing with something else until you figure out how it will help you progress further in the story.

From the moment I picked up the game’s very first item and looked out the window of a cliffside estate, I could see the effort to take things a step further than last time. There seems to be just a bit more to see here than in previous installments – as if the walls have been extended slightly outwards – so there’s more to see visually. When I took a photo off the shelf, it sparked a comment from The Handler – a “main in the chair” type guide who always comments on your missions – and he seemed to reminisce about seeing the photo featuring Doctor Roxana Prism, suggesting there’s a lot to learn about the game’s villain too.

Dr. Prism is featured in the opening sequence video embedded above with an original song performed by Haley Reinhart, and the game’s promotional material focuses on her and her affinity for robots:

Roxana Prism, M.D., is a former Agency inventor and the genius behind the implant in your brain, which allows agents to use telekinesis. She has been an invaluable leader and inspiration to our agents and is currently enjoying a well-deserved retirement.

Dr. Prism’s last project with the Agency was a robot to replace human agents. His hope was to limit the death toll on the ground, but the project was ultimately deemed unsuccessful. The circumstances surrounding his departure after the robot initiative are closed but all parties involved are considered to have parted on good terms.

The Agency’s research and development team would not be what it is today without the technological advancements made by Dr. Prism. Ensuring his safety is a top priority for our team, as is preserving his legacy.

I won’t spoil much, but by the end of the first level you’ll get a glimpse of Dr. Prism and, again, it’s clear that Schell is looking to step up a bit from John Juniper’s dark appearances in the last game. This is a game that seeks to create more richly realized Bond-like cinematic moments for the player in each new installment.

We’ll have more coverage in the coming weeks as part of our Upload Access series examining Schell Game’s latest spy puzzler.

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