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Unrecord's Hyper-Realistic Graphics Are Blowing People Away

Every once in a while, a gameplay demo comes along that takes the internet by storm and blows people's minds. Vive's Whale Encounter in VR, CDPR's first sneak peeks at "Cyberpunk 2077" (complete with a ton of stuff that was cut from the final release), Shigeru Miyamoto and Eiji Aonuma giggling their way through the first open-world look at "Breath of the Wild." Each of these displays took gamers by surprise and showed them how the industry is continuing to evolve in new and exciting ways. A demo is meant to entice players, to get them excited for the possibilities and ready to shell out for a preorder. But sometimes, these demos can look so polished that they leave players wondering how they could possibly be real. That's the general reaction to the recently gameplay reveal trailer for DRAMA's upcoming first-person shooter, "Unrecord."

As the game's Steam page explains, this is "a single-player FPS that tells the story of a tactical police officer from the perspective of his body camera. As you work to solve a complex case, you'll need to use your tactical and detective skills to succeed." It's exciting to note that the game will be much more than a simple run-and-gun affair — after all, detective stories can be even more compelling than simple action-fests. However, the real star of the show here is the game's hyper-realistic graphics.

The trailer depicts an officer infiltrating what appears to be a criminal hideout, briefly engaging in a firefight and an interrogation before being interrupted by an explosion. Since the official trailer went live, it's racked up hundreds of thousands of views, with re-posts from other outlets earning millions more. And already, "Unrecord" is prompting a wide variety of responses from viewers.

Unrecorded's realistic footage has gamers divided

The trailer quickly became the talk of social media on Wednesday and Thursday, particularly after mega-popular streamers like xQc and Asmongold got a chance to take a look and weigh in on it. For his own part, xQc found the trailer to be impressive, but thought that it might venture too far into the realm of realism to be comfortable. Asmongold had a hard time believing the final game could possibly offer the same level of realism, but seemed to be entertained by the trailer overall.

Many reactions on social media have been largely similar, with some people flat-out refusing to accept that "Unrecord" will look like the trailer. After all, a number of high-profile game trailers have been released in the past that oversold the final product. Crytivo founder Alex Koshelkov put forth the theory that the game trailer is utilizing live-action footage with graphical assets laid on top. "[The game's] animations are too complex, entire project looks very, very fake," he argued. "You all getting fooled."

Those who trust DRAMA's trailer are reacting with a mixture of awe and apprehension. Gamers sharing the trailer on social media have commented that sections of the preview feel almost like a horror game, largely thanks to the demo's realistic lighting and immersive sound design. Others are chomping at the bit to see how the game actually plays once you get a controller in your hands. Gorgeous graphics are one thing, but an FPS is only as good as its shooting and cover mechanics, right? 

Beyond these concerns, another debate has sprung up in light of this trailer reveal: Is this an appropriate game to release in today's political and social climate?

Concern over the violence in Unrecord

With a rise in police brutality and militarized officers being a major concern in the United States, some gamers have argued that game with the premise and title of "Unrecord" is in poor taste. Others are concerned that the game's footage could be passed off as real-life — something that's happened far too often for comfort.

As far as the developer is concerned, there is no attempt in this game to comment on any of the above issues, although the dev is aware of the possible pushback. An FAQ page for the game states, "As a French studio addressing a global audience, the game does not engage in any foreign policy and is not inspired by any real-life events. The game will obviously avoid any undesirable topics such as discrimination, racism, violence against women and minorities ... We also respect and understand people who may feel disturbed by the game's images." The dev has also reassured gamers that the footage is 100% real and (almost ironically) created in Unreal Engine 5.

"Unrecord" co-creator Alexandre Spindler went a step further and shared some footage of his own playthrough of the demo on Twitter. In the clip, Spindle can be seen controlling the player character and even making some edits to the environments, proving that this footage has indeed been constructed in Unreal 5.

It remains to be seen if "Unrecord" can live up to the current hype or escape the scrutiny that is sure to come its way. In the meantime, curious fans can Wishlist the title on Steam and wait for further footage to make or break the illusion.