Hey, everyone! Yaga is finally out today on PC, Xbox One, PS4 and Nintendo Switch today. We’re so proud of the game and our friends at Breadcrumbs Interactive. I’m going to start this blog post with the obligatory links to where you can buy and play Yaga then we can chat about all the fun stuff. Remember, the game is normally $24.99 USD, but for launch week we have the game at a 20% discount.
On Epic and PlayStation you can also buy the Bad Luck Bundle that features the game soundtrack. The PlayStation version also comes with a premium theme we had built special. The Bad Luck Bundle is also 20% off, so that’s a lot of savings on a lot of fun content.
Okay, so now about the game. Yaga’s a very special game for us. It’s a game that’s beautiful to look at, fun to play, easy to get into, amazing to listen to, and incredibly well written. When lead designer Catalin explained concept of applying the ever-changing nature of oral storytelling folktales to a videogame that takes the best parts of traditional action RPGs and roguelikes, our minds were blown away. The game is filled with homages to all the stories his team grew up on about figures like the Baba Yaga, the Domovoi, Nightingale the Robber, and others. So along with our launch trailer, we collected all the creature features we created to serve as introductions to the fabled characters within Yaga. We still have more videos to come, but here’s a good look at the first few!
In Slavic lore, Poleviks are field spirits that appear as dwarves. Poleviks like to cause mischief, like leading villagers astray in fields. Usually seen during the day, Poleviks will punish any farmers they see napping on the job. Poleviks are destructive monsters, but they’re not always such spiteful creatures once you get to know them….
In popular Russian legend, Il’ya Muromets is an epic and heroic figure. On a mission to get to Kiev, Il’ya had to cross the Briansk Woods. The path through was overgown, as Solovei Rakhmatich, also known as Nightingale, killed all who attempted to pass. Nightingale was known for his powerful whistle, which could flatten trees and kill men dead. Il’ya survived Nightingale’s powerful whistle, he shot a fiery arrow at Nightingale’s temple, pounced on him and captured him. Nightingale’s human children tried to come to his rescue, but Il’ya killed them all. Il’ya then presented Nightingale to the prince and ultimately beheaded the half-man, half-bird thief. But this never happened in Ivan’s world. The legendary warrior Il’ya is far away, and Nightingale is on the loose. Can a simple blacksmith face such a challenging foe?
In Slavic legend, Kikimoras are female house spirits. At night she enters through the keyhole of a home, sits on the sleeping inhabitants’ chests, and strangles them to death.It was wise to leave a key or piece of paper in your door. If your house in orderly and neat, she may actually help out in the home, taking care of dishes and livestock. If your house was a mess, she would further wreck your home, by breaking dishes, or tangling up your needles and thread. Ivan’s not known for keeping a neat and tidy house, he’s a blacksmith afterall, so he’s in for a lot of trouble when he crosses a Kikimora’s path.
In Slavic legend, the Bukavac is a six-legged horned demon that lives in bodies of water. They emerge at night to make loud noises. They’ll jump on animals and villagers, crushing and strangling them. They’re evil, strong, violent, and not really not more complicated than that. Though if one were to offer help to Ivan, he might want to take them up on the offer…
We’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response to the game so far and particularly to the soundtrack. So along with selling the soundtrack on PlayStation and the Epic Games Store, we’ve uploaded the entire sound track onto YouTube for you to enjoy. Whether you’re going for a run, at work, doing homework, blacksmithing at home, cooking, conjuring monsters to help you fight your foes, exercising, or overthrowing your monarchy this is a great listen.
We want to thank the fans who’ve been following Yaga since it won its first award to PAX East and West, Gamescom and launch.
Special thanks to our fans in Russia for showing interest in the game. Even if this blog post isn’t translated into Russian, the game is!
So, Yaga is text localized in Russian, Spanish, French, Italian, German, and of course English. If you’re on PC or Apple Arcade you already have Turkish, Portuguese (Brazilian), Arabic, Korean, and Dutch. Consoles will soon get patch for all these languages. And Japanese will be incoming soon to all platforms as well!
Lastly, want to leave you with some fun facts!
1) Yaga was more obtuse early in its development. What does that mean? Well, you know how the game keeps lots of secrets and doesn’t hold your hand? Imagine that times 10! Fun for some people, but we realized how hard it made things. It was easy to miss all the cool tools and missions. So Breadcrumbs added loading screen tips, made discovery easier, but still found balance with teaching players how to play, but not telling players exactly what to do.
2) If you understand Slavic folklore and ancient pagan beliefs, you will do better. We won’t say more for now, but the references ring true.
3) Bad Luck isn’t necessarily bad. You gain XP faster and may face some special challenges that are a means to more treasures. You can actually game the system so you get Bad Luck more frequently. At first it’s shocking to lose your loot when you get Bad Luck, but it might be worth it to use those fun magic monster summons and get new abilities faster. Yaga isn’t a game about black and white, good and evil, paragon or renegade. Righteous, foolish, aggressive, greedy… these are facets of all people and sometimes it’s a good thing to be all these things. Sometimes being righteous harms a villager. Sometimes being a fool is to your benefit (usually not though).