Dark Messiah of Might & Magic

Thought I’d mention that Fileplanet is putting up a singleplayer demo today, August 8. Ultima Underworld was the game that got me to buy a PC, so I’m looking forward to this game. The gameplay movies have looked absolutely spectacular, though of course, the proof is gonna be in the gameplay (and what worries me a bit is that some of the gameplay has looked a bit puzzle-ish - got to cut this rope to make this log swing down to hit the cyclops in the eye or you won’t be able to get past him. Though I suppose it’s no different from a boss battle in a console game, if you think about it). I would guess DMOMM is more focused on action than on RPG-ing.

So what do people think? I know that shrinking enemies to mouse size and stomping on them can’t really compare to dressing zombies up in masks and killing em with an umbrella, but hey, we non-360 owners got to do our own thing, eh?

I’ve really been looking forward to this game. You’re right, the movies that’ve been released so far look spectacular both visually and in the gameplay displayed.

Man, rpgcodex is going to loathe that game.

RPGcodex loathes everything.

I thought it was at least going to have an axe.

I think that they have been honest and straight-forward about the fact that it is not a RPG, that it is more like a fantasy-action HL2. So if people get bent about that, it is their own deal …

I thought it was going to be an action RPG at least? No?

Well, perhaps you might say that … but if you are an RPG fan, and go into it with RPG expectations, you’ll likely end up sounding like the guys at RPGCodex (based on what I’ve heard from guys who’ve talked to the devs and read in previews). If you expect an action-hacker like Blade of Darkness then the little RPG-ish stuff will be a bonus.


Ok, well, can’t be disappointed if you don’t have expectations, I guess. I’ll still try it out though.


I hated the vid for it from E3(?) - it reminded me of the Halflife2 scripted shit that Valve tried to pass off as pure AI.

Hoping it won’t be the case.

From what I’ve read of dev team interviews, the Half-Life-alike comment wasn’t so much about player-driven character development, but was more a general description of the gameworld, opportunity for open free-form exploration, and availability of side-quests. They’ve been pretty up-front about how railed it is, even coming right out and saying “the world is VERY linear” or something along those lines. The question is always, “Is it like Oblivion, where you can run around and do what you want, meet random townsfolk, and get different quests from different groups?” “No, it’s more like Half-Life 2 where you run around going where we want you to.”

Kinda disappointing. I’d been really looking forward to this, expecting it to be like their last action semi-rpg Arx Fatalis. Despite its (somewhat) small scale, Arx, with its free exploration, cool magic and crafting systems, and game-altering decisions, was one of the best gaming experiences I’ve had in the last several years, while Half-Life 2 was repetitive and forgettable (other than Ravenholm, which was both jarringly out of place and awesome).

I’ll still probably pick this one up, though. If Arx is any indication, the guys at Arkane are really crackerjack at constructing memorable, immersive, and very atmospheric environments.

I just hope it’s not as buggy as Arx. I loved the game, but I still have yet to beat it, because my character got stuck 2/3rds of the way or more through the game.

Yeah, I remember there were a few places that you could actually break the game with your decisions. Which was a shame. However, I never finished it because of a virus.

The “Crusade” multiplayer mode sounds potentially nifty, though.

There was a big jump to be made fairly near the end, and I literally attempted it 125 times before making it … and only after getting a hint that notching down screen res would make the jump work better …

It’s up.

Don’t make me cry about Arx Fatalis all over again. It’s like a burrito filled with the tastiest meat in the world, yet the tortilla has gone rancid. I can’t talk about it.

Wow! If it’s the one I’m thinking about, I just used a levitation scroll and floated over it.

Have to agree with the bugginess. I’ll always remember my shock when the snake ladies showed up in the penultimate cutscene for some big reaveal about how their queen was the cursed sister of the king’s daughter/rebel leader or some such. This was, of course, after I’d opted to go through the snake ladies’ lair and wipe them all out because they did something that really irritated me, so I was very surprised when they all came boppin’ up. It was an Arx Dead Rising moment.

That was just a bollixed scripted event, though… didn’t prevent me from finishing the game.

Why do you torment me?!

There’s more RPG in this action game than I was expecting. Pressing ‘tab’ summons a window with a tiled inventory, some stats, and a few basic skill trees for character customization. You can pick up many items in the game, and all of the combat related items automatically go in your inventory. Most weapons in the demo have damage stat modifiers, such as cleavers that do +2 damage. Skills provide abilities like increased health, mana, stamina, damage, new spells, new sword attacks, and more. The environment is linear, but your progression through it varies based on the choices you make. It puts Deus Ex 2 to shame.

I’m not entirely sold on the feel of the melee combat in Dark Messiah, but the rest of the gameplay seems to have some meat to it. It looks and sounds excellent, too. I love the lighting effect that softens the appearance of the environment. This is one to watch.