“This project is the perfect opportunity.”: Hellblade 2 and the Original Game Offer Melina Juergens the Platform to do Real Good – Ninja Theory and Xbox Actually Care about the Art, as Well as the Profits

We never know what's going on inside that head.

“This project is the perfect opportunity.”: Hellblade 2 and the Original Game Offer Melina Juergens the Platform to do Real Good – Ninja Theory and Xbox Actually Care about the Art, as Well as the Profits

SUMMARY

  • Hellblade actress Melina Juergens went through psychosis in real life during her twenties.
  • This experience helped her add realism to different aspects of the game's protagonist, Senua.
  • Prior to the game's involvement, the German actress had never been into acting.
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Senua’s saga will continue in Hellblade 2. It may not be lengthy like the games of today, but it will be deep. Melina Juergens, who plays Senua in the game, shares a striking resemblance with the character when the mind is central to the topic. She didn’t just put her acting skills to the test, but a part of her that brought the character to life.

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Ninja Theory’s game is scheduled for a May 2024 release and by the looks of it, the game will demand a lot from Xbox Series X. This will certainly add realism to not just what’s happening on the outside, but on the inside. Interestingly, the game didn’t just offer a visual treat to the eyes, but an opportunity to get inside the head of someone who might be suffering from psychosis.

Hellblade 2 and The Original Games Gave Melina a Purpose

Melina Juergens didn't have prior experience in acting when she played Senua.
Melina Juergens didn’t have prior experience in acting when she played Senua.

In a role that was both physically and emotionally demanding, Melina Juergens did quite an excellent job given that it was the first time she gave a go to acting. Her efforts lead her to claim BAFTA’s Game Award for Best Performer. But there’s more for her from this role to offer. It gave her a chance to do something meaningful.

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During an interview, she shared bits of pieces that she experienced when she stepped into the shoes of Senua. Melina says,

Ever since I had that experience with psychosis myself, I always wanted to find something that I can do with it that’s meaningful and help other people. This project is the perfect opportunity.

The National Institute of Mental Health has explained psychosis as a condition when a person loses some contact with reality. During this time, a person may find it difficult to distinguish between what’s real and what’s not. An estimate highlights that 15 to 100 out of 100K people develop the condition every year.

It’s Not Just Senua But The Players Who’ll Need a Mental Preparation

Hellblade 2 will bring new challenges for Senua in her way.
Hellblade 2 will bring new challenges for Senua in her way.

Hellblade 2 and the original game isn’t just a product of gaming enthusiasts’ zeal but the mental counseling from the advisors that Ninja Theory employs.

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Dom Matthews, Ninja Theory boss, told PCGamesN that,

We have mental health advisors within the team and we also offer external counseling that we have on hand for everyone in the studio.

That certainly has helped enhance the game as can be experienced in the original game. Players wearing headphones while playing Hellblade could induce anxiety provided the 3D audio that feels like voices inside one’s own head.

The game will be released exclusively for Xbox and carry over concepts like permadeath and puzzles from the original game. Apart from the mental deep dive, a new and more dynamic combat system has been implemented to make the fighting experience more real. With all these aspects in place, players can expect a holistic experience from the game.

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How do you feel about the mental aspects incorporated in the game? We would like to know your thoughts in the comments section.

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Written by Anurag Batham

Articles Published: 244

Anurag Batham is a video games correspondent at FandomWire. With over two years of experience in writing for different industries, his past works show his passion for the metaverse and his awareness of the environment. He's always playing with ideas to turn them into captivating stories.

A gaming enthusiast who can prove it when you have a round of Call of Duty (COD) with him. And it may take more than a coffee with him if you are to talk to him about Marvel. One can find a reader in him who's always keen to perfect what he already knows and to learn everything new.