How diplo­macy can get dif­fi­cult when magic is­lands are in­volved Adam Bryant

XBox: The Official Magazine (US) - - PREVIEW - Pub­lisheR Fo­cus Home In­ter­ac­tive De­vel­oper Spi­ders For­mat Xbox One ETA TBA

When we first glimpsed this 17th century fan­tasy RPG, we were eager to find out more. Well, this month, Spi­ders, de­vel­op­ers be­hind The Tech­no­mancer and Bound By Flame, gave us a demo of its big­gest game yet, and we’re even more ex­cited than be­fore.

Your home­land has been plagued by a re­lent­less dis­ease with no known cure, and the dis­cov­ery of a mys­te­ri­ous is­land full of magic and strange crea­tures has brought hope of find­ing one. We join the main char­ac­ter 15 years af­ter the dis­cov­ery of this is­land, which has now been set­tled by many dif­fer­ent na­tions with their own mo­ti­va­tions. As a mem­ber of the Con­gre­ga­tion of Mer­chants, one of the six fac­tions lo­cated in th­ese lands, it’s your job to form al­le­giances, but at the same time you’re on a per­sonal mis­sion to save your mother, who is dy­ing from the dis­ease.

Greed­fall is all about choice and con­se­quence, and ev­ery de­ci­sion you make will have an im­pact on the story. But those choices won’t be black and white, as none of the fac­tions are in­her­ently good or bad. “We didn’t want the evil guys to be just evil, it makes no sense,” ex­plains Spi­ders CEO Je­hanne Rousseau. “Here all the fac­tions and all the dif­fer­ent char­ac­ters have a real rea­son to act

“We didn’t want the evil guys to be just evil, it makes no sense”

the way they do. You may not like the rea­son but they still have one.” Ba­si­cally, you’d bet­ter have a sil­ver tongue and a good moral com­pass. Fight­ing fan­tasy But it won’t just be a bat­tle of wits— one sec­tion of the demo sees us fight­ing with mem­bers of other fac­tions. There’s also the strange beast and other crea­tures to con­tend with. Killing en­e­mies will re­ward you with items and ma­te­ri­als to craft and cus­tom­ize your ar­mor and weapons, of which there are a huge va­ri­ety, from swords, axes, and dag­gers to long and short range firearms. The com­bat seems fairly straight­for­ward, with your typ­i­cal at­tack, parry and dodge, but you also have magic in your ar­se­nal. We were told that there will be over 100 dif­fer­ent skills to choose from, al­low­ing you to play the way you want.

You won’t be ven­tur­ing into this world alone, ei­ther; a com­pan­ion from each of the fac­tions joins you. Two can be with you at any given time, and cer­tain mem­bers will ben­e­fit you in dif­fer­ent ways. For ex­am­ple, Siora, one of the na­tives, will act as trans­la­tor, 033 and hav­ing her in your party will let you un­der­stand the na­tive lan­guage.

Other fac­tions out­side of your own and the na­tives in­clude Theleme, a re­li­gious au­toc­racy in­spired by the Vat­i­can, who wish to con­vert the na­tives and bring them into their fold. The Bridge Al­liance con­sists mostly of schol­ars and al­chemists look­ing to dis­cover the is­lands se­crets. Then we have the Coin Guard, which act as body­guards. You’ll meet a lot of the th­ese, as they are hired by the other fac­tions and have be­come hugely in­flu­en­tial as a re­sult. The Nauts, who are the navigators and ex­plor­ers of this world, have also risen to promi­nence due to be­ing the only one ca­pa­ble of sail­ing the dan­ger­ous seas around the is­land. We love a good in-depth RPG and

Greed­fall is set to be one of the deep­est we’ve seen in a while, with 16 dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions to ex­plore, a ro­bust cus­tomiza­tion and craft­ing sys­tem, and branching sto­ry­lines with in­ter­est­ing char­ac­ters all set in an orig­i­nal uni­verse. Our ex­pec­ta­tions are ob­vi­ously high, and we’re con­fi­dent Spi­ders can de­liver.

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