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Psychonauts 2: Release date, trailer, news, gameplay and more

Psychonauts 2
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Psychonauts 2 is finally coming this year, after the sequel to the cult classic was revealed in 2019. Under Microsoft's wing, Double Fine Productions will bring Psychonauts 2 to the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs in August. 

The sequel will continue on from where its predecessor left off in the Rhombus of Ruin where we'll see the return of Raz and the gang.

The original 2005 game wasn't a commercial success by any stretch of the imagination, but Psychonauts has gained its status as a cult classic over the years since then. 

From the gameplay footage we've seen so far, the platformer has a good chance of appealing to fans of the original games, and could win some new players as well. With that in mind, here's what we know so far about Psychonauts 2. 

Psychonauts 2 release date

At the E3 2021 Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase, Psychonauts 2 was shown off in a solid trailer of game footage, and at the ned a release date of August 25 was revealed. 

Furthermore, it will be a day one release on Xbox Game Pass, making the game subscription service even more of a must-have

Psychonauts 2 trailer

The latest Psychonauts 2 comes courtesy of E3 2021 and gives us a good overall look at the style, action, game footage and quirky humor of the game. 

Expect colorful characters, a bevy of locations and dynamic platforming action to drive Psychonauts 2 forward. 

Psychonauts 2 gameplay

Psychonauts 2 is a platformer featuring a psychic acrobat imbued with supernatural powers. As such, you can expect some fun twists to jazz up the standard gameplay format of jumping around on things. 

If you played the first game back in 2005, or the updated 2011 version, you know what to expect. Of course, Psychonauts 2 will offer new levels and new abilities, some of which we've had a peek at in the trailers. 

Double Fine has also added a new hub world inside Psychonauts HQ for the sequel. From here, players can access to new worlds in characters' minds. Raz can help these guests by defeating their inner demons, or — in an even more terrifying twist — "unravel their deep-seated emotional issues." It's a tough job, but someone has to do it.

Psychonauts 2 merit badges

(Image credit: Double Fine)

In terms or powers, Raz is still perfecting his previous PSI-abilities, and will have new ones to play with, too. We know he'll carry over some powers from the first game, revamped and improved for the sequel. The merit badges on Raz's satchel display the powers he's unlocked, and a closer look at the Brain in a Jar trailer shows five badges with slots for three more. 

Taking a look at the screenshot, we can see badges for PSI-blast (or marksmanship), Levitation and Pyrokinesis abilities, as well as the new Time Bubble power. The badges have had a bit of a redesign since the first game, so the remaining two on Raz's bag are likely candidates for Telekinesis (hand icon) and Clairvoyance (spooky eye).  

Psychonauts 2 story

The official first trailer for Psychonauts 2 giver newcomers an overview of the story. In a nutshell, the game follows 10-year-old Razputin 'Raz' Aquato — trained acrobat and psychic — who ran away from the circus to become a super spy. 

The first game is set in the Psychonauts training camp, while in Psychonauts 2, Raz is now a full-fledged member of the organization. Double Fine gives a nice overview of the basic plot on its website:

"But these psychic super spies are in trouble. Their leader hasn't been the same since he was kidnapped, and what's worse, there's a mole hiding in headquarters. Raz must use his powers to stop the mole before they execute their secret plan--to bring the murderous psychic villain, Maligula, back from the dead!"

We don't know much about Maligula, but the figure at the end of the first trailer could well be them. 

psychonauts 2

(Image credit: Double Fine)

Is Psychonauts coming to PS5?

The official Xbox website doesn't specifically mention PS5 availability for Psychonauts 2. It's a safe bet that the PS4 version will be playable on the PS5, though. As of July 2020, all new PS4 titles submitted for certification must be compatible with PS5. 

Double Fine hasn't shared whether we'll see an optimized version of Psychonauts 2 for the PS5. We already know that the Xbox Series X/S will support an optimized version of the game. 

Psychonauts 2 outlook

Psychonauts 2 could be a hit with fans of the series, as well gamers who've dabbled with Double Fine and Tim Schafer games in the past. With overhauled gameplay and next-gen optimization, the sequel should offer newbies something to look forward to as well. 

Given the route Microsoft is going with new releases, Psychonauts 2 will likely be available on Xbox Game Pass at launch. We know the title will be optimized for Microsoft's latest hardware, while there's no word on a PS5-specific update that will do the same. 

Hopefully, Double Fine has captured some of the magic from the original title, and injected a healthy dose of it into Psychonauts 2.       

Shabana Arif

Shabana is T3's News Editor covering tech and gaming, and has been writing about video games for almost a decade (and playing them since forever). As well as contributing to Tom's Guide, she's had bylines at major gaming sites during her freelance career before settling down at T3, and has podcasts, streaming, and video content under her belt to boot. Outside of work, she also plays video games and should really think about expanding her hobbies.