Perfect Dark: everything we know about the new FPS (2023)

VonStacey Henley


After 15 years, Perfect Dark is back with a new studio developing an "eco-sci-fi" version of the FPS.

Perfect Dark: everything we know about the new FPS (1)
(Video) What's So Great About Perfect Dark? - A Bright Future for First Person Shooters

Unveiled at The Game Awards 2020, Perfect Dark is a reboot with an unconventional heritage. Despite being just a two-game franchise, Perfect Dark has managed to garner a loyal following, with many of those who played it as kids now at an age ripe for marketable nostalgia.

Working with Crystal Dynamics, Perfect Dark's development studio The Initiative hasn't given us much in the two years since the game's release. And some high-profile exits by major developers have raised concerns for certain speculative quarters. Now that we're heading towards 2023, we can only guess when we'll hear more.

Here's everything we know about Perfect Dark.

What is the release date of Perfect Dark?

We just haven't seen enough to know. The initiative was founded in 2018, but it's not like everyone sat down on their first day together and immediately started coding levels for Perfect Dark. With no gameplay revealed in late 2022 and not even a vague release window offered, it's safe to say we shouldn't expect Perfect Dark until 2023 at the earliest.

Additionally, a series of high-profile departures from senior developers at The Initiative left some with a chaotic impression of Perfect Dark's development, but we can only speculate as to what impact this actually had on the game's development timeline.

Here's the first trailer for Perfect Dark(opens in new tab)

This trailer debuted at The Game Awards in December 2020. You can also look at itthis video the developer(opens in new tab)talk briefly about the project that ran right after the trailer.

What is the story of Perfect Dark?

Perfect Dark: everything we know about the new FPS (2)

(Video) 8 Reasons Why Perfect Dark Still Outranks Every FPS

The first game was set in 2023 and revolved around two alien races using Earth as a battleground. Yep, just like Transformers, although I promise you I was less silly about the whole thing.

The alien war is actually secondary to the main plot, which is the battle between the Carrington Institute (good guys) and dataDyne (bad guys). DataDyne wants to use alien technology for common evil in the early 2000s and you must stop them while working for Carrington. Eventually, as part of the story, you will be taken to the planet of the evil aliens (Skedar), where you will defeat their leader and then fly back to Earth in a spaceship. It was really good. I promise.

The sequel, Perfect Dark Zero, was actually a prequel, so the original Perfect Dark will serve as a starting point. This new Perfect Dark is described as being set in the "near future", so it will take place a little after the last few games, but not much. We know that the main character, Joanna Dark - more on her below - is also back, so it makes sense that she would pick up where the series left off.

The game will be an "eco-sci-fi" where companies (like dataDyne) have made the planet much greener and cleaner, but at a price. In the trailer, we see a lush, lush city in bloom, but we also see parts of the land that have been ravaged by fire and destruction. As the trailer ends, Joanna Dark has just disposed of one of those green bodies (read: she killed everyone in it) and is standing on the roof of the building looking out as a storm rages in the distance. The roof logo identifies this building as dataDyne HQ.

So it looks like Perfect Dark has something to say about climate change, which will hopefully add some nuance to the campaign setting.

So is this a reboot? A remaster? A sequel? A precursor?

It's definitely not a remaster. This new Perfect Dark has its own history, and while the developers talk about taking inspiration from the past, they also say they don't want to use it "too much" as they bring Perfect Dark into the modern age. A prequel is also unlikely; It's rare that a franchise that's been dormant for so long decides to start over with a prequel instead of moving on and breaking new ground. Also, the "near future" setting would not fit; Perfect Dark was originally set in 2023, so a prequel would be in the "recent past". Two prequels in a row is also a bit stupid.

As for the reboot or the sequel, from what the developers have said about the game's consideration of the past, it looks like it will be a little bit of both. It doesn't look like it's going to pick up directly on the story threads of the 2005 game, but it's not entirely back to the drawing board either. It will be the same character fans know and love, the same central antagonist, just with an entirely new narrative.

The aliens will still be back, right? To the right?!

For sure. The Skedar weren't wiped out, just defeated, and the other aliens, the Maians, are also thriving. The trailer even kicks off in space, with the developers letting us know that the alien storyline hasn't been dropped just yet.

Who is the main character in Perfect Dark?

Perfect Dark: everything we know about the new FPS (3)

Speaking of character, this is Joanna Dark. She is codenamed Perfect Dark because of her perfect score on her aptitude tests (and last name, of course). Many sources contributed to Rare choosing her name. As the groundbreaking female hero, Joanna Dark was cast as a nod to Joan of Arc, while her look was modeled after '90s Winona Ryder.

(Video) Perfect Dark - The Greatest FPS Of All Time

Her personality might be equal parts La Femme Nikita and Dana Scully from The X-Files, but she has a much greater focus on technique than either; She approaches situations more like Sam Fisher from Splinter Cell. Oh, and she was designed by Martin Hollis, the director of GoldenEye 007, so needless to say, her use of weapons has always been excellent.

How is the combat in Perfect Dark?

Sam Fisher meets GoldenEye is actually a good way to describe it, if I do say so myself, but let's get into a little more detail. It's a first-person shooter and generally has a very clean and uncluttered interface. Players were encouraged to take things slow, with stealth and timing being more effective than a hail of bullets.

The developers of the new Perfect Dark have said that they "rely heavily on 'What is a secret agent?'", which fits in with Joanna's more methodical approach to combat. They also said they are trying to "diversify" the use of weapons by "differentiating spy combat from a traditional first-person shooter". From her interview at The Game Awards, we're seeing a more action-oriented Joanna this time around, as the developers mention that she slides under obstacles or jumps over obstacles mid-fight.

It looks like the new Perfect Dark will emphasize the "physicality" of fights, but it will also take advantage of the expanded scope available to developers today, meaning more technical elements can be incorporated. And that should go well with Perfect Dark, which has always had a huge focus on gadgets and smart alternate fire modes for each weapon.

We haven't seen any gameplay yet and don't have many clues as to when we will, but the developers seem to be following the legacy of the original games with a clear and straightforward vision for the character and setting.

Who are the developers of Perfect Dark?

We've mentioned developers many times, but we haven't talked about them specifically, so let's do that now. Developed by The Initiative, Perfect Dark is actually the studio's first game. But judging by the attached talent, it's certainly not her first rodeo.

The studio is led by Darrell Gallagher (former head of Crystal Dynamics) and includes Christian Cantamessa (writer of Red Dead Redemption), Drew Murray (director of Sunset Overdrive) and Brain Westergaard (lead producer of God of War). Many of the other developers also have great games under their belts, with BioWare, Naughty Dog, Respawn, Sony Santa Monica, Blizzard, Insomniac, and Rockstar's CVs in the studio's archives.

Daniel Neuburger (Tomb Raider director) was working as a director on the project, but an attentive ResetEra user noticed this.The developer's LinkedIn profile indicated that he had left(opens in new tab)The initiative in early 2022. This certainly adds to the already chaotic development cycle.

Initiative is actually one of those studios that Xbox bosses claim to make "Quad A's" games. I mean, nobody else is going to call them that, but still pretty exciting, right?

What platforms will Perfect Dark be on?

Being an Xbox game, Xbox Series X/S goes without saying, and since it will also be available on the Microsoft Store, we'll have it on PC as well. No word on whether it will be on other platforms like the PS5 or Nintendo Switch; It's unlikely, but Microsoft hasn't been as possessive of its exclusives as some other platforms.

It also seems to be an absolute certainty for Game Pass, as well as all first-party Microsoft games.

(Video) Perfect Dark, Rare’s odd follow-up to Goldeneye - Talking Skull


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Stacey Henley

(Video) Perfect Dark N64 - Decompilation framerate test

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What happened to the new Perfect Dark game? ›

Games as large as this could take up to five years, so we might not get our hands on Perfect Dark until 2022 or 2023. Design Director Drew Murray is also no longer with the company, as he's now returning to Insomniac Games. However, this should be nothing to fear, as he claims he left the company for personal reasons.

Is Perfect Dark remake better than original? ›

Although the gameplay remains largely unchanged, the remaster features significant technical improvements over the original, including new higher-resolution textures and character models, a higher frame rate, and a multiplayer mode that supports the Xbox Live online service.

What is the new Perfect Dark story? ›

What is the perfect Dark story? Microsoft described the upcoming Perfect Dark as an “eco sci-fi” tale set in the near future. The first trailer drives that idea home – the voice-over describes increasing natural disasters and shows a giant storm ravaging a city while Joanna watches.

Is Perfect Dark a reboot? ›

The Perfect Dark reboot has gotten a disappointing update from a reputable insider. Perfect Dark is a franchise that is near and dear to a lot of people who grew up in the 2000s.

How long does it take to complete Perfect Dark? ›

When focusing on the main objectives, Perfect Dark is about 8½ Hours in length. If you're a gamer that strives to see all aspects of the game, you are likely to spend around 31 Hours to obtain 100% completion.

Is Perfect Dark better than GoldenEye? ›

Goldeneye set the standard for the console FPS, but Rare's follow-up, Perfect Dark, is hands down the better game. So why is it forgotten? Rare's seminal FPS Goldeneye 007 is one of the most well-known video games of all time.

What changed in Perfect Dark 360? ›

Some minor changes have been made, however. The game can now run in up to 1080p and maintains a 60 FPS framerate most of the time. Textures have been replaced with higher resolution equivalents. Character, weapon, and other object models have been replaced with higher polygon count variants.

What resolution is Perfect Dark N64? ›

Perfect Dark on Xbox Live Arcade set the standard for a modern re-release of a classic N64 title, with 4J Studios delivering a welcome 1080p upgrade along with 60fps gameplay and reworked graphics that made the original artwork more palatable for display in high definition, without compromising the original artistic ...

What is the best Final Fantasy Remake? ›

Overall, if you own any modern console, they are all excellent places to dive into this timeless RPG. The top pick, even though the upcoming FF7 Ever Crisis remakes several games portably, the Nintendo Switch version of Final Fantasy 7 is currently the best way to experience this classic.

Why is Perfect Dark so good? ›

In Perfect Dark, upping the difficulty meant that there would be both more objectives and new areas that you needed to utilize. Another aspect of Perfect Dark that still stands out to this day is the ability to shoot weapons out of enemies' hands.

How many maps does Perfect Dark have? ›

The game comes with 16 maps, three of which are classic maps from GoldenEye 007. Only a few maps are available at first, but completing Challenges and the game's main campaign will unlock the rest over time.

Is Perfect Dark a sequel to GoldenEye? ›

Perfect Dark is GoldenEye 007's unofficial sequel. It was developed, at least in the beginning, by the same team and was released in 2000. It runs on an advanced version of GoldenEye 007's engine, which has support for many new features, such as elevators and vehicles that can attack the player.

What year is Perfect Dark set in? ›

The Perfect Dark series debuted in 2000 with the Nintendo 64 first-person shooter Perfect Dark. Set in 2023, the game follows Joanna Dark, an agent of the Carrington Institute agency, as she attempts to stop a conspiracy by rival corporation dataDyne that involve extraterrestrial life and technology.

Is Perfect Dark 2 player? ›

Perfect Dark features a multiplayer mode where up to four players and eight computer-controlled bots can compete against each other in different arenas. A split-screen is used for multiple players.

Who is the girl in Perfect Dark? ›

Joanna Dark is a fictional character and the main protagonist of the Perfect Dark video game series. She debuted in the Nintendo 64 first-person shooter Perfect Dark and is a player character in all the games of the series.

What is the hardest level in Perfect Dark? ›

The Skedar Ruins is one of the most difficult missions in Perfect Dark which is entirely appropriate with its placement in the campaign, but it's one that you can keep coming back to over the years. Perfect Dark is Forever.

Who is the secret agent in Perfect Dark? ›

Joanna Dark, nicknamed Jo by friends, is the top agent employed by the Carrington Institute, specializing in combat, espionage, and undercover operations. She is a young woman and the titular main protagonist of the Perfect Dark series, and plays a pivotal role in the events of the games and novels.

How many weapons are in Perfect Dark? ›

In each mission, you'll start off with a set of weapons including almost always a Falcon 2 variant. You'll be able to then pick up new weapons from fallen guards or hidden locations as you progress through a mission. Listed below are all 35 weapons found in the game.

What FPS does GoldenEye 64 run at? ›

Which makes sense, the original game was designed to run at 30fps. However, fans have figured out ways to break this cap and for years now people have been playing GoldenEye 007 on PC at twice the framerate.

Why was GoldenEye n64 banned in Germany? ›

Germany Banned Sales of GoldenEye 007 for Years

In late 2021, Nintendo 64 classic GoldenEye 007 was taken off the German BPjM list of "Media Harmful to Young Persons." Its inclusion on the list was due to the game's violent content, as it obviously involved gunplay like the movie on which it was based.

Does Perfect Dark have co op? ›

While Perfect Dark's solo missions play out much like those in GoldenEye 007, the game's fantastic multiplayer options are another matter entirely. Cooperative and counteroperative simultaneous-play modes allow for another player to join in on a mission as, respectively, a teammate or the enemy.

Is Perfect Dark in trouble? ›

Microsoft has assured us that the new Perfect Dark game in development is not in trouble, saying that the way it makes games is evolving. Matt Booty, Head of Microsoft Studios, spoke about the game at PAX West last week.

How do you get to HoverBike in Perfect Dark? ›

The HoverBike is a personal transportation vehicle that appears in four levels in Perfect Dark. The player can ride it around by double-tapping the "B" button on the N64 controller or the "A" button on the Xbox 360 controller.

Is Perfect Dark Zero a prequel? ›

Perfect Dark Zero is a first-person shooter developed by Rare and published by Microsoft Game Studios. It was released as a launch title for the Xbox 360 video game console in 2005. The game is part of the Perfect Dark series and a prequel to the original Perfect Dark.

Did N64 have better graphics than PS1? ›

While the N64 had smoother graphics overall, the PS1 games had better textures. The textures that were applied to the shapes within Ps1 games were much more realistic. Again, a lot of this is because the PS1's hardware specs and triangle polygons made it easier for third-party developers to build games for the Ps1.

What is the highest resolution for N64? ›

The Nintendo 64 supports 16.8 million colors. The system can display resolutions from 320×240 up to 640×480 pixels.

What is the lowest playable resolution? ›

1080p, also called Full HD, is the current minimum standard for most console and PC games.

What is the most iconic Final Fantasy? ›

Final Fantasy III is arguably one of the most important entries in the series. It was the first to incorporate iconic elements the series is still known for today, including the job system that would become a semi-regular part of the series, and the furry floating Moogles that are arguably the Final Fantasy mascot.

What is the most profitable Final Fantasy game? ›

Final Fantasy XIV

How many levels are in Perfect Dark n64? ›

She has been sent on a mission to infiltrate laborites based inside a multination cooperation know as dataDyne. The game itself runs on an enhanced version of the GoldenEye engine and the player controls Joanna Dark as they play through the 17 levels the game has.

What was the point of Dark? ›

It ran for three seasons from 2017 to 2020. The story follows characters from the fictional town of Winden, Germany, as they pursue the truth in the aftermath of a child's disappearance. They follow connections between four estranged families to unravel a sinister time travel conspiracy which spans several generations.

What is the age rating for Perfect Dark? ›

The fact that Perfect Dark features an 'M' rating has surprised a lot of Nintendo 64 owners who were expecting a similar presentation to GoldenEye.

How do you unlock weapons in Perfect Dark? ›

Unlocking Weapons in Combat Simulator

Unlock Falcon 2 (silencer) by completing 3 challenges. Unlock SuperDragon by completing 4 challenges. Unlock Laptop Gun by completing 5 challenges. Unlock Remote Mine by completing 6 challenges.

Why is Perfect Dark rated M? ›

Blood will spray from humans and creatures when injured, resulting in large blood splatter on floors and walls. Players have the ability to shoot dead bodies which causes more blood spray and stains on the ground.

Where is the bomb in Perfect Dark? ›

The N-Bomb appears in the Pelagic II level, (in Joanna Dark's inventory), In G5 Building: Reconnaissance, (near one of the blocked up doors), and in Mr. Blonde's Revenge, (as dataDyne Shock Troopers will throw these occasionally.)

Who is the female villain in GoldenEye? ›

Xenia Onatopp

What happens to Boris in GoldenEye? ›

Alan Cumming memorably played Boris Grishenko, a Russian computer expert who met his maker after being fatally frozen by computer coolant in Pierce Brosnan's 'GoldenEye'.

What country is dark set in? ›

However, Winden, the small town where the story is set is fictitious. But, the shoot locations are scattered in and around Berlin, Germany. Here are some of the filming locations of this mind-bending family drama series created by Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese. Warning: This article contains spoilers.

What are the difficulties in Perfect Dark n64? ›

Each mission has three difficulty levels, the easiest being Agent, medium is Special Agent and the hardest is Perfect Agent.

Is Perfect Dark cyberpunk? ›

Inspired by cyberpunk classics such as Blade Runner and Ghost in the Shell, Perfect Dark is a 2000 N64 FPS and a spiritual successor to Rare's previous N64 FPS GoldenEye 007.

Who is velvet dark? ›

Velvet Darkness is a Mexican heavy metal band from Ciudad Satélite, Mexico, founded in 2013 by guitarist Joe SaraF and bassist Charles Kray.

Who is Chelsea from in the dark? ›

In the Dark (TV Series 2019–2022) - Lindsey Broad as Chelsea - IMDb.

Is Perfect Dark third person? ›

Traditionally the Perfect Dark series is of the first-person shooter genre as listed on the Xbox game page. However according to the sources of VGC, the new Perfect Dark will have “third-person elements”.

Is there a new dark pictures game coming out? ›

Bandai Namco and Supermassive Games revealed the next entry in The Dark Pictures Anthology, and it's titled Directive 8020. This game will release for PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.

Will there be a new dark pictures games? ›

Yes, The Dark Pictures: Switchback will be releasing on February 22, 2023.

Will the Darkness 3 ever happen? ›

"A few of us at Digital Extremes started on a pitch document for The Darkness 3, and we even got a very small prototype started, but unfortunately it never moved forward.

Is Perfect Dark a AAAA game? ›

The studio is comprised of veterans from across the gaming industry, ensuring only the best of the best are working on this title. Xbox has referred to the game as an "AAAA" title, as opposed to the normal "AAA" label used for big budget titles.

What is the next Dark Pictures Anthology game release date in 2023? ›

The Dark Pictures: Switchback VR is an upcoming rail shooter video game developed and published by Supermassive Games for the PlayStation VR2. It will be released on March 16, 2023.

What is the longest dark pictures game? ›

With all this in mind, and based on averages reported about the previous games in The Dark Pictures Anthology, this means that The Devil In Me is the longest of them all so far, though not by very much.

What is the scariest dark pictures game? ›

1. House Of Ashes: Dark Pictures At Its Strongest (So Far) House of Ashes is the third game in the Dark Pictures Anthology, and many Supermassive fans will point to it as their favorite entry of the series so far; it boasts an 89% positive rating on Steam next to the 72% of each of its series peers.

Are all dark pictures games connected? ›

Each installment is standalone, having its own characters, setting and story. However, they all exist in the same universe, having references to each other, and are linked through The Curator, a mysterious character who accompanies the player in each game.

How many dark pictures games are planned? ›

What's interesting is that Supermassive Games has long referred to The Dark Pictures as an eight-game series. These five new trademarks bring the total up to 10.

How many games will be in The Dark Pictures? ›

Games. The series is planned to consist of eight games, of which four have been released.

Is darkness older than God? ›

The Darkness predates the Universe. The Darkness is older than God Himself, as stated by Death. This makes The Darkness the oldest being to ever exist in the Supernatural universe.

Are The Darkness Twins? ›

Sure he does." The Twins are twin sisters that appear at the start of The Darkness II.
The Twins
Appears in:The Darkness II
Real World information
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How did Jackie get The Darkness? ›

At the age of six, Jackie was adopted by upcoming Mob boss Frankie "Kill-The-Children-Too" Franchetti, claiming to be his uncle. He only did so after being persuaded by Sonatine of the Brotherhood of Darkness that bringing Jackie into his inner circle would make Frankie powerful.


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