Diablo creator David Brevik is finally ready to show off what he’s been working on for two years at his indie studio Graybeard Games. It Lurks Below is a sandbox game that takes its cue from Re-Logic’s Terraria in both gameplay and style. Two hundred players will have access to its closed beta from Friday to Monday evening, and Brevik plans to livestream himself playing the game at various times this weekend on his Twitch channel.
Graybeard hasn’t released much about It Lurks Below. It mashes up gameplay from Terraria alongside Diablo mechanics. Screenshots feature a retro pixel art aesthetic with characters wielding guns, defending homesteads, and fighting monsters in gold-studded mines.
Brevik created the iconic action role-playing game Diablo at his studio, Condor, which eventually became a part of Blizzard Entertainment and adopted the name Blizzard North. The game was hugely successful when it launched in 1996, selling over 2.5 million copies and popularizing the real-time action RPG genre. It eventually spawned two sequels — Diablo II and Diablo III, which has sold over 30 million copies in its lifetime.
Since Brevik’s early days at Blizzard North, he’s founded and joined other companies including Gazillion Entertainment. He went independent in January 2016 and founded Graybeard. His story seems to follow the trend of triple-A talent taking the plunge into indie games. Graybeard is a solo effort, and Brevik says that it’s challenging but rewarding.
“It’s humbling going from large teams making content based on huge properties like Marvel to a one-man team with a brand new idea no one has heard of yet — but I’m loving every minute of the process,” said Brevik in a statement. “It’s all very exciting … and a little bit scary, too. I’ve always been a huge proponent of community involvement in game creation, and I heartily welcome all feedback from players and Twitch-stream viewers — anything that can make It Lurks Below the best it can possibly be.”
Terraria released in 2011 for PC, though it has rolled out to iOS, Android, and a plethora of other consoles since then. It’s sold over 20 million copies and inspired other games besides It Lurks Below, such as Chucklefish’s sci-fi sandbox title Starbound.