It's hard to believe that it's been over a decade of the PixelJunk games. In that timespan PixelJunk, Inc., PixelJunk Monsters, PixelJunk Shooter, and a few other oddball entries in the series have come to fruition (including a music visualizer), all twisting and turning the series in surprising ways. And yet, despite a decade of fandom bustling around one key title, PixelJunk Monsters has remained alone, even as PixelJunk Shooter got itself a sequel. No longer is that the case, and no longer will the series stay in 2D either.
PixelJunk Monsters 2, the sequel to its predecessor of the same name, will release on Steam, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch simultaneously later this year. It's the first true sequel to the popular tower defense game from developers Q-Games, which first launched back in 2007. And with its revival on modern consoles, the whole series is entering 3D for the first time, a major change for the usually 2D series. (Although, Q-Games has developed 3D games in the past, including the 2016 free-to-play game The Tomorrow Children, which had its servers shuttered late last year.)
The game features all the same intricate tower defense players expect from its 2D predecessor, only now players have a grander landscape to run their Tikiman across. Levels range from snowy to desert climates, and have weather effects like freezing in turn. Players can also explore the world from a closer third-person perspective (with the camera situated behind the Tikiman), in addition to its top-down view. The depth-of-field, blurring either the foreground or Tikiman, is also adjustable from the closer, crisper point-of-view. During a demo at this year's Game Developer's Conference, Q-Games President and CEO Dylan Cuthbert tells me this new perspective is "perfect for screenshots."
PixelJunk Monsters 2 will also feature local and online multiplayer, with up to two players for couch play to up to four for online rounds. The game has other new features too, like in-game cosmetics of masks and shells for your turtle-like Tikiman for players to dress up their little dude as they build towers to protect their beloved hut and Chibi pals.
You'll be able to craft enormous towers in the place of trees and cacti, unleash fruit bombs, and more once PixelJunk Monsters 2 releases in its refreshed HD visuals for the first time once it launches digitally on May 25 for $14.99. If you want an inside look at the game, Q-Games' Cuthbert will be hosting a Game Developer's Conference-set livestream tonight at 5 p.m. PDT through publisher Spike Chunsoft's Twitch.