Sand Land premieres at Summer Game Fest from makers of Dragon Ball

Sand Land Game Trailer Pc Console Release Date Summer Game Fest

The last thing most of us probably expected to see was a high fidelity anime game trailer shown off at Summer Game Fest 2023, but Sand Land is a pleasant surprise none-the-less. Roughly two minutes of in-engine footage made up the trailer and showed off a bright and energetic world full of characters that certainly tick the nostalgia box for classic anime vibes. Perhaps we should expect no less though, given that Sand Land was created by Akira Toriyami who also brought us Dragon Ball.

The trailer was sparse on story details, so we dug up some plot details from the original Sand Land manga to get a feel for what this game is about. The synopsis is that the world is in a post-apocalyptic state where water is scarce, hence the land of sand. Of course there’s still water, but some greedy king hoards it and uses the precious resource to further enrich himself.

An old sheriff named Rao decides he’s had enough one day, and teams up with a demon named Beelzebub to set things right in the world. They expand their crew along the way and get into plenty of mischief and adventures. They also like to fight over who gets to drive the tank. As the trailer puts it, we’ll play as “an unlikely hero.”

Anime art brought to 3D gaming at its best

One of my favorite recent trends in gaming has been the rise of the high fidelity 3D anime art style. There are plenty of examples to look at, but Genshin Impact and even Fortnite are two that I like to point out. Bandai Namco knocks it out of the park with Sand Land as far as I’m concerned, though.

The game uses Unreal Engine 5 to create an aesthetic that blends the anime style with cutting edge lighting techniques, soft shadows, motion blur for stylized effects, and even some complex geometry. All of this takes place in an open world judging by the look of things and the fact that Unreal Engine handles open world so well.

At any rate, the trailer is a real joy to watch, so take it in with the upbeat music for yourself. Classic Dragon Ball fans will surely want to keep up with Sand Land as more details come out. There was no mention of a release date but it will be available on PC through Steam as well as PlayStation 4 and 5 and Xbox Series X and S.

Summer Game Fest also detailed more on Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, including a release date. There was a Honkai: Star Rail announcement for PlayStation 5, and a new party character was revealed for Baldur’s Gate 3.

Kevin Foley
About The Author
Senior Staff Writer with PC Invasion since 2020, advocate for playing on the hardest difficulty options, and a graphics fanatic. Kevin's go-to gaming genres are shooters, RPGs, tactical strategy, and environmental puzzlers. His favorite franchises of all time include Halo, Mass Effect, Portal, KotOR, Super Smash Bros., Fortnite, and The Elder Scrolls. When he's not writing about games, he's investigating PC tech to see how it can improve gaming experiences.