Double Fine and Sega have officially announced The Cave, a side-scrolling, multi-character adventure game coming to Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network and PC in 2013. Led by Ron Gilbert, The Cave sees an eclectic cluster of impromptu spelunkers – including a scientist, a monk, a knight and a time traveler – finding their fortunes (and perhaps more) in the titular, mysterious and, err, "sultry" subterranean network. That's right: The Cave can speak.
The rest of the protagonists are silent, but up to three can venture into The Cave at a time. After picking your trio, you guide them all deeper into the seamless network of underground rooms, switching control between each to solve puzzles and exploit their unique abilities. The knight, for instance, can activate a guardian angel that protects him from flames and falls, while the hillbilly can hold his breath underwater forever. (Take that, Guybrush Threepwood!)
The game can be completed with any combination of characters, but certain endings and unique areas are locked to individual characters. Having the knight in your group, for example, will open up the medieval castle and its puzzles for play. And yes, there just happens to be a castle buried deep within in The Cave. With a "New Grog" vending machine (among other inharmonious objects) cropping up in the network's lower bowels, we think it's safe to say that Ron Gilbert's touch is evident throughout the game.
He also programmed the whole thing himself, we think. Probably.