Hey Playstation fans! I’m Kevin Zuhn, Creative Director at Young Horses. If you haven’t heard, Bugsnax is getting a free update soon called Bigsnax Island, and the release is incredibly close. Given that, I thought I’d take some time to dive into the delightful details of five new features coming to Bugsnax.
Explore a new island
The titular island of Bigsnax is an all-new biome to play in, twice the size of any other. The Bugsnax are also oversized there (but more on that later). You and your grumpy comrades are shocked when this new landmass springs from the ocean just off Snaktooth Island. You’ll quickly gather a group of volunteers including Chandlo, Floofty, Triffany, and Shelda, and work your way up to investigate its mysteries.
With this zone, we put more emphasis on environmental puzzles that put your tools to the test. You’ll come across vertical mazes that can only be navigated with your ball buggy, and they’re getting more complex; some are even inhabited by mischievous snaxes. There are also mechanical ruins that can be opened through clever use of your fire and its ability to spread fires. Fun fact: A temple door that opens from a lit fire may sound fantastic, but we were inspired by the real-life works of Archimedes.
Like I said, the new island is home to an absolutely massive Bugsnax collection. They are so big that they can bypass your usual traps and tools. So how do you catch them? Well, there is a useful substance on the island called Shrink Spice. If you throw it at a Bigsnak, it will shrink to a much more manageable size, giving you the chance to trap it. Unfortunately the spice is extremely volatile and once you pick it up you have 30 seconds to use it before it explodes.
Even with Shrink Spice, the Bigsnax won’t be a breeze; they have many other defenses. The Clawbsteroni (a lobster made of mac and cheese) for example uses a giant trampoline to bounce the spice away from its head. Aside from the somewhat familiar Bunger Royale, all snaxes on the island are brand new, so there’s plenty to discover about their behaviors and abilities. We had a lot of fun creating designs for them, and this update gave us the opportunity to incorporate both insects and foods that we didn’t have room for the first time.
Decorate your hut
Of course, the island itself isn’t the only thing to check out in this update. Back in Snaxburg, Filbo introduces you to your own hut. We had always wanted to give the player a home among their grumpy friends, but that was unfortunately left on the cutting room floor. Yet we left a half-finished cabin in Snaxburg with the hope that it might one day turn into something more.
Indeed, your hut starts out as a humble pile of wood, but over time it can grow into a two-story luxury abode. You can decorate and customize the hut with all sorts of unique furniture, wallpaper, and lawn ornaments (my favorite being a grumpy twenty-foot-tall skeleton). There are around 180 decorations to collect. How did you come across all these decorations? Well…
Checking your mail
Your cabin is also linked to a new set of activities delivered through the mailbox. The town curmudgeons will send you requests and challenges, and each time you complete one, you’ll receive a thank you letter with gifts attached. You’ll also receive letters and gifts to mark various milestones throughout the game (so returning players will have a good number to start with).
We designed these letter challenges to encourage players to explore the game in new ways. You might be tasked with observing unique Bugsnak behavior, solving a puzzle, or climbing to the highest point of a level. One of my favorites is placing advertisements for Cromdo Mart around Snaxburg. The letters are also filled with jokes, anecdotes and secrets from your favorite curmudgeons, so we hope you enjoy reading them.
Collect bug hats
Finally, we’ve added bug hats! When you feed the curmudgeons in Snaxburg, the transformations eventually drop their hats never to wear them again. You may have wondered at some point; what happened to those hats?
Well, the Bugsnax have them! In the wild, you may encounter a Bugsnak wearing a hat. If you catch it, the hat is yours and you can now proudly put it on the head of any Snax in Gramble’s barn. Once you find your first hat, the Hat Board will appear in Snaxburg, showing you where to find the next one. We think it’s fun to have a rare little event like this to shake up your bug hunt.
That’s it for our tastiest new features, but there are plenty more stories and secrets to uncover throughout the update. Bigsnax Island will be free on April 28 for all Bugsnax owners on PS4 and PS5.
I hope you all enjoy diving into a second Bugsnax course!