Hi everyone, I’m Phil Crifo, Tchia’s game director and co-founder of Awaceb. We are so excited that tomorrow Tchia launches to the world, and it’s the culmination of an incredible 5-year adventure for a tiny team making a big game.
As we’re nearing the release, we wanted to give you a final look at how we expanded on the sandbox open-world formula. If you’re new to Tchia, no doubt the below overview will bring you up to speed before you dive in the game on PS4 and PS5.
To prepare you for the adventure that lies ahead, we also wanted to give you a few early-game tips. And so here are some of the top five items & features that you will be using in the game’s opening hours
Tchia’s trusty slingshot was gifted to her by her father, Joxu. It’s the very first tool you’ll receive in the game, and it will come in handy to aim at trees and knock down coconuts or bananas to consume and restore your energy. It’s also a useful weapon to wield against the Maano – the fabric-made creatures that have abducted Tchia’s father – to buy some time as you’re trying to find flammable items to get rid of them once and for all.
You can also test your aiming skills in shooting range challenges, where reaching the top score will get you a golden trophy. Those will prove very useful for other activities.
The slingshot also leverages some of the unique PS5 features, such as the adaptive triggers, where you’ll feel the weight of the sling at the tips of your fingers. And if you feel like becoming an expert sharpshooter, you can activate the motion sensor for a more accurate aim. Give it a go, it’s accessible to toggle on or off in the menu.
One of Tchia’s most unique features is the Ukulele. You can harness the powers of this magical instrument with just a few strums. It’s fully playable, customizable, and also a game-changer.
Gifted to Tchia by Joxu’s best friend Tre, the ukulele can be used for a whole host of things. Through unlockable magical tunes called Soul Melodies, Tchia can affect the world around her, make new items or animals appear to give her the edge in exploration and combat. The ukulele also comes into play at some heart-warming story moments in the game, where you can play along to scripted songs.
When resting at a camp, you can also style up your Ukulele to suit you, with many options to customize it to your own personal taste.
For those who want to jam a little more freely, Tchia’s ukulele is fully playable, and you can experiment with an entire musical scale. Whether you want to play chords or a single string, bend notes, pluck or tweak your way to musical greatness – the choice is yours to play whatever you want! We are very excited to see what you do with this feature.
From the early days of developing Tchia, we always intended to make a game that felt like a toy-box. We designed Soul-jumping with that in mind. Soul-jumping is one of Tchia’s inherent powers and you’ll use this to take control of almost any item or animal you can find in the archipelago.
As we’ve already covered the Soul-jumping mechanics in detail in our latest video:
Here are some new animals you may not have seen yet that you can use to your advantage.
Birds overall offer one of the strongest traversal advantages in the game. This is also why they will eat your soul-meter quickly! Use their super accessible controls to fly over cliffs and get to your destination in a flash. And if you’re cheeky, you can use “R2” to dump a nasty surprise on unsuspecting inhabitants. Cows also allow you to do the same, but be careful, as their dung is a bit unstable due to the use of Soul-jumping and they tend to … explode!
Of all sea creatures you can possess in Tchia, dolphins are probably your fastest option… They can rush through the ocean if you sprint, and you can even do cool flips and other stunts when jumping out of the water. Fish are the best way to travel underwater and won’t be using the stamina you consume to hold your breath, giving you time to quickly scout your surroundings for valuable chests & pearls.
Dogs (or Boars!)
Most land animals have digging abilities, which can prove very valuable when looking for trinkets or other hidden surprises. They are also much faster than Tchia on foot should you need to cover a large area more quickly. Though cats can’t dig, they do have another special ability that we’ll let you discover for yourselves! We’re very proud of the sound effect we’ve prepared when you trigger their ability 😉
Crabs are slow and don’t cover as much ground as the other animals, but they surely pack a pinch! Use their powerful pincers to snap locks off chests and get easier access to them!
Trinkets & Pearls
Trinkets and pearls are collectibles that you can find throughout the archipelago and play a critical role in the coutume – a Caledonian ceremony performed as a gesture of appreciation and respect for someone. Whenever you need to do offerings, or buy additional cosmetics, trinkets and pearls are almost always involved.
You will find a lot of them throughout your journey, and you can identify their locations by activating shouting spots, that will reveal more activities and collectibles around you.
Once you’ve collected enough of them, make your way to the nearest town or dock and see what kind of outfits or boat customization items you can unlock by spending them.
As you travel across the archipelago, you will meet many inhabitants who will help you on your journey. This is the case of Louise, a young girl from the village of Weliwele, that will give you a camera and ask you to take loads of pictures.
Tchia is all about finding joy in the little things, and the camera system makes no exception. It was created to emulate the super rewarding process of shooting on film. Select your lens, your film roll, and even set up a tripod with a self-timer to take a cool pose. As you’re shooting on film, you’ll have to find a place where you can develop your pictures and enjoy the surprise of finding out how accomplished a photographer you are.
A final word on accessibility
This was a last look at Tchia before it releases tomorrow, and we’re so grateful to everyone that has been with us throughout the development of our game. At the heart of Tchia is accessibility, and this is a philosophy that runs through the game in many ways.
All activities and challenges have been set up so that performance is always optional, and you don’t need skills to progress in the story. Should you get stuck, you will always have the possibility to skip a gameplay segment so that you can discover what lies next with ease. Plus, if you really want to, you can start your journey at any point in the story via the chapter selection menu, available right at the beginning of your adventure.
Tchia is a vibrant and colourful game inspired by New Caledonian culture. It’s a poetic coming of age story, but it also includes scenes that are not suitable for children. Therefore, if you want to play with your little ones, we recommend that you activate the “family mode”, that will automatically make some of the more violent or graphic scenes in the game suitable for the whole family.
We can’t wait for you to dive into Tchia! And remember, if you’d like to customize Tchia & her boat to the colours of the other Kepler Interactive games, you can purchase the Oléti Edition (or the Kepler Customization Pack) that includes outfits, ukulele & boat customization items from the games Sifu, Scorn, Flintlock & Cat Quest.