Revealed during Nintendo’s May 2022 Indie World showcase, Gunbrella is a noir-punk action-adventure game with glorious pixel art. The trailer suggests a side-scrolling 2D platformer with gimmicks surrounding an umbrella that is also a gun. For instance, you can use this titular gunbrella as a hang glider, or as a hook to latch onto ziplines. You can also use it as a shield. And, of course, you can shoot people with it.

The 52-second trailer (which I’ve posted at the bottom of this article) shows off a few of these gunbrella mechanics, as well as some moody pixelated scenes followed by some fast-paced action. The action looks especially fun, with the player combining the gunbrella’s hang-glider mechanics with its shooting mechanics to create an on-the-fly, twitchy toolkit for intense, dodge-heavy shootouts. Also, the boss fights seem pretty intense.

All of this looks awesome. We could all use some more 2D run-and-gun gameplay in our lives. However, publisher Devolver Digital sent out some screenshots that paint a slightly different picture — one of a game that’s far more complex than the reveal trailer might suggest.

For example, here’s a shot of the inventory menu:


First of all, it’s weird that a rat would be a useable item in this game, which suggests there are far more mechanics for players to take advantage of than just the gunbrella. But also, look at how many tabs there are in this menu. The one on display is the Resources tab, but you also have tabs for what I assume correlate to food (apple icon), key items (key icon), ammo (bullet icon), whatever a target icon might suggest (I have so many potential guesses for that one, like a list of bounty targets, for instance), and info (book icon). Generally, if you have to sort your inventory into multiple tabs, there’s a pretty robust amount of possible items.

And then there’s this screenshot of a fruit stand:


This has both buy and sell options, suggesting you can offload your unwanted items at various shops throughout the world (the fruit stand makes a lot of sense, actually, considering the inventory menu has a food tab). That’s another feature that I wouldn’t have expected based on the short trailer.

Now check out this screenshot:


We see a robed figure talking about spilling blood to awaken something called Baby (while the protagonist views all this from a hidden location behind what seem like clay bowls). So this game features some sort of blood cult as well?

Oh, and here’s something that is in the trailer, but it’s super easy to miss:


This town is called Orwell. Hmmm…

Yes, those are small things, but they suggest a darker story, a more complex in-game economy, and a broader array of usable tools than you probably initially assumed. I was certainly surprised to see hints of a much deeper gameplay experience in these screenshots than what was shown in the trailer.

Obviously, I’m very excited about this game. We don’t have a ton of information about this yet, but I think the gameplay seems fun, the pixel art looks incredible, and the RPG-like elements add some depth to it. I don’t know how deep these systems are, but I’m hoping this is something I can get lost in for tens of hours.

Anyway, I promised you a trailer, so I’m going to give you one. You can check out the reveal trailer for Gunbrella below.

Gunbrella is slated to come out on Nintendo Switch and PC in 2023.

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