E3 2013 Preview: Lords of the Fallen is your next-gen Dark Souls
City Interactive had a little surprise up its sleeve this year. While it was revealed a few weeks ago, nothing was known about Lords of the Fallen other than being a next-gen Action RPG for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC. Today I was finally able to get a glimpse at what this game's all about, and exactly how next-gen it really is.
To kick off the hands-off presentation, I was told that Lords of the Fallen has been designed to be one of the hardest Action RPGs ever made. Quite a bold claim considering one of my favorite games, Dark Souls, has already claimed that spot. Regardless, I was eager to see the game in action, and wanted to see whether that claim was in any way truthful.
Lords of the Fallen is an ARPG through and through, and actually takes a lot of elements and inspirations from Dark Souls. For one, the game wants to focus on very duel-oriented combat, meaning that rather than sending 10 enemies on you at once, you're generally going to be fighting an enemy or two at a time. While it sounds limiting, each fight, whether its a standard enemy, a miniboss or a giant monster, will feel tense, ande difficult.
A stamina meter will dictate your character's ability to dodge roll out of harms way, and swing their weapon a certain amount of times. Though there aren't classes per se, your character's behavior will rely on the currently equipped weapon. Each weapon class, from what we've seen three today, will have its own associated skill. For example, a hammer will allow the player to make a clone of himself, which will in turn aggro the enemy. Daggers on the other hand slow time, allowing you to get behind and score a critical finisher on the enemy.
The combat itself seems a little faster paced and somewhat smoother than Dark Souls, which is a welcome feature. Whether it was harder, that's hard to tell, one because I didn't actually get to play the game myself, and two because it was an E3 build, and chances are the dev's characters might have been beefed up. Regardless, dodging heavy hitting attacks and striking at the correct time seemed to be a necessity, rather than an optional strategy.
The game will have non-linear exploration, but will be broken up into chapters. The developers really wanted to emphasize that the game will hold many secret collectibles and enhancements for those that really go looking for them. The game will also reward players who decide to backtrack to previously visited levels when certain items or keys are obtained, with powerful equipment and weapons.
One interesting point to note is that even though the game was shown off on a PC, the game was built from the ground up for consoles, meaning the PC version is the port. Looks like next-gen is turning development on its head, with PC's getting ports rather than the other way around.
Lords of the Fallen will be making its way to PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PCs in 2014.