This mythological hunting game from an ex-Skyrim dev is coming sooner than I thought

view down red clay canyon into a cave, massive skulls hanging over the entrance
(Image credit: Just Purkey Games)

The Axis Unseen, a heavy metal bowhunting game from longtime Bethesda dev Nate Purkeypile (head and sole member of Just Purkey Games), got a fresh trailer at the Future Game Show: Spring Showcase. The trailer revealed some new biomes coming to the game, as well as a release window of some time in 2024.

The Axis Unseen basically hones in on a single Elder Scrolls playstyle, the much-beloved sneak attack archer guy, and builds an entire open world game around its strengths. The Axis Unseen looks way more immersive sim than RPG, with Purkeypile placing a huge emphasis on stealth outside simple line-of-sight mechanics. 

Footsteps on different surfaces will alert enemies in a similar fashion to the Thief series, while enemies can track your footsteps just as easily as you do theirs. In an early devlog, Purkeypile even revealed enemies' capacity to smell you, with a small radius around them expanding based on wind conditions.

You're not going to be hunting Bambi's mom in this game either⁠—Purkeypile's lining up a selection of Nordic bugaboos that'd be right at home in The Witcher's Skellige Isles or the rebooted God of War series. In the new Future Games Show trailer, we got a closer look at some of them: a majestic stag with way too many antlers, some leshy-style giant woodmen who don't react kindly to fire arrows, and a big Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle-looking guy I hope I'm allowed to befriend instead of hunt.

It all takes place in a desolate open world of the "something horrifying and unspeakable seems to have happened here" variety. Sandstone monoliths and towering ossuaries abound, and in addition to the snowy forests of previous trailers we now see sickly green wastes and hazy red sandstorms. For an open world game being made by a single person, we don't have to wait too long either: the FGS trailer ends by revealing a general 2024 release window for The Axis Unseen, and you can currently wishlist it on Steam.

Associate Editor

Ted has been thinking about PC games and bothering anyone who would listen with his thoughts on them ever since he booted up his sister's copy of Neverwinter Nights on the family computer. He is obsessed with all things CRPG and CRPG-adjacent, but has also covered esports, modding, and rare game collecting. When he's not playing or writing about games, you can find Ted lifting weights on his back porch.