ArtPlay has confirmed it is deviating from its "previously released roadmap" for Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night to bring a new character "NOT from the world of Bloodstained" to the acclaimed 2019 Castlevania spiritual successor from Koji Igarashi.
After acknowledging that "some technical issues have slowed down [its] production timetable", Artplay apologised for "the long delay between updates" and detailed what's coming next for fans of the Metroidvania adventure.
"Our next update will introduce a new playable character to the game," teased a new blog post from development team Artplay. "This is a change from our previously released roadmap. We can confirm that this new character is NOT from the world of Bloodstained. We have been working closely with a well-known partner to bring their character (and a friend) into the game.
"As with previous characters, you will be able to explore the entire map, though certain abilities will need to be acquired before some areas and bosses can be accessed," it added. "Along the way, you will be able to increase the rank and class of the character's special ability to grow in power."
The team added that due to delays it still did "not have a release timeframe for you yet", but added that the mysterious new character will arrive with the next update.
Some details were also teased for the update after that one, too. "We expect the next update to include Chaos Mode with co-op and Vs Mode with multiplayer," the blog post added.
Publisher 505 Games has confirmed in June that Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is definitely getting a sequel.
As Matt summarised for us at the time, word of a sequel originally surfaced after fans spotted a bullet point inserted into 505 Games' latest fiscal year financial results, stating a "second version" of Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night was in development. Although the term "second version" left a certain ambiguity as to whether this was referring to a sequel or something else, 505 confirmed that "[505 Games and Artplay] are in very early planning stages for a Bloodstained sequel".
In Eurogamer's Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night review, I said the Metroidvania "is a Castlevania game in all but name [and] embodies everything we love and more. It took more time to get here than we'd originally expected, granted, but Igarashi sure did deliver in the end."