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The Artful Escape E3 trailer teases a multi-dimensional rock and roll adventure

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The Artful Escape of Francis Vendetti, which I is apparently now being called just The Artful Escape, is a game about "great expectations, famous folk singers, lingering shadows, space Gods, hallucinogens, individuality, reptile shops, and wild imaginations." And if you think that's confusing, wait until you feast your eyes on the new trailer that appeared at Microsoft's pre-E3 press event today. It is visually striking, deeply strange, and it rocks out pretty good too. 

The description that accompanied the trailer isn't a whole lot clearer, saying only, "The Artful Escape is about a teenage musician who embarks on a multidimensional adventure to inspire his stage persona." That sounds reminiscent of a Lizard King kind of trip, and the trailer gives off a similar sort of feeling, going from a stroll down a street to a Half Life-style hazard suit to a solar-powered laser beam guitar flight through the sky in no time flat. 

Shaun took a look at The Artful Escape last November at PAX Australia, and was able to come away with a more grounded idea of what it's all about. "The story is woven stylishly around a series of 2D sidescrolling set pieces," he wrote. "Vendetti can run, jump, play guitar, and, befitting his role as a multidimensional budding rockstar, float into the sky." More than that, however, developer Johnny Galvatron of indie studio Beethoven & Dinosaur didn't want to say for fear of spoiling the story. 

The Artful Escape doesn't have a release target set—the trailer says only that it's "coming when it's damn ready"—but there's a website you can dig into at theartfulescape.com, and a handful of screens below. 

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.