I’ve talked before about the reasons I decided to resurrect Rez for our upcoming PS4 game Rez Infinite: the chance to remaster everything to razor-sharp, 1080p fidelity and crisp 3D audio; to add new content in the form of Area X (more news on that soon!); and especially to give PlayStation VR owners the bonus option to play the game like never before.
But another big reason I wanted to revisit Rez is maybe the simplest: the original game is really hard to find!
There’s no easy way to find and play any version of Rez currently – and no way at all on any of the current gaming systems. So while I’m super proud that, over the last 15 years, Rez’s fan community has grown along with its reputation, as more and more players have discovered its integration of graphic design, sound, and shooting action, at the same time I regret that fewer and fewer people have any way to play the game!
All that will change on 13th October, when Rez Infinite launches digitally on PlayStation Store. But that’s not all! Today I’m proud to announce something else our fans can look forward to this autumn: a whole new line-up of cool Rez Infinite goods!
As with the game, the original Rez soundtrack, T-shirts, etc. have become harder and harder to find over the years, so we’ve teamed up with the awesome folks at iam8bit to fix that.
First is our most-requested item: a physical disc version of Rez Infinite for PlayStation 4. It’ll be a limited edition, not sold in stores — only online at iam8bit, with pre-orders starting on 19th August at 5pm BST/6pm CET along with all our goods. (Just keep in mind that we can’t promise that these physical goods will reach players by our launch date, but we’re planning to ship them as close as possible to that date in October!) This physical disc costs a little more than the digital version will, of course, but we hope fans and collectors will agree it’s worth it. I’ll be honest: a big reason we’re doing this is I wanted to have one of these for myself!
But next is what I’m personally most excited for: the vinyl record set. This is why I knew we had to go with iam8bit. Music is an essential part of Rez Infinite, so when they sent a sample of their previous gaming vinyl work up until now, the decision was easy. iam8bit certainly didn’t disappoint on Rez Infinite, either — we were in love with their vision for this from the very first mockups we saw.
The vinyl record set includes two LPs of music from the original Rez, completely remastered for vinyl, plus an extra bonus 7-inch record featuring music from our new “Area X” content (as I say, more on this very soon, I promise!) There’s even a special limited edition, with prints of the player avatar right on the discs…
Of course, Rez is about more than just music, so we wanted a place to show off the visual side of the game as well. So, we thought, why not bundle an art book with the vinyl — 48-pages of giant Rez images, along with quotes from the dev team?
And when I say giant pages, I mean GIANT PAGES: the two-page spreads are 24 inches wide (!) and really make an impact. The book is actually sewn into the binding of the vinyl jacket—a totally custom package that iam8bit is creating just for Rez Infinite.
What started as an idea for a simple art book has evolved into much more — it’s become a retrospective of sorts, from the people who made the original Rez, as well as members of the Rez Infinite team (and some of us who worked on both).
The team at iam8bit, working with author Nick Hurwitch (The Hohokum Almanac, So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel) and designer Cory Schmitz (check the link because there’s too many things to list!) interviewed me and several other members of the original dev team, including art director Katsumi Yokota, programmer Osamu Kodera, artist Jake Kazdal, and Takashi Ishihara, the artist on our new Area X content (did I mention more news on this soon?). What we ended up with was hours and hours of stories about the inspirations behind Rez and its unique development process — stories we all realised were just too good to waste.
In the same way, we couldn’t help but create a few other items we wanted for ourselves, like this excellent t-shirt design from my friend (and super Rez Infinite supporter) Phil Fish, creator of Fez and the upcoming Superhypercube, plus a couple of cool collectible pins that iam8bit whipped up.
So? What do you think? Please let me know in the comments (I may not respond since we’re all really busy finishing the game right now, but I’ll be watching). Hopefully all Rez fans will find something here that they like, including those future fans who’ve never played before but will give Rez Infinite a try on PS4 or PSVR starting this fall… all without having to go to eBay or hook up a dusty old Dreamcast to enjoy it!