Darkest of Days - first impressions

"It's been an awful long time since a story driven shooter came out," said Aaron Schurman, CEO of Phantom EFX and creator of Darkest of Days. But it's also been a long time since we've seen a fun story about time travel. In Darkest of Days you'll find yourself at the Battle of Little Bighorn. But before you're scalped and left for dead with Custer, a portal appears and a stranger tells you that you weren't meant to die here before he kicks the bucket himself.

After entering the portal, you'll find yourself at the headquarters of a futuristic organization locked in battle with another “evil” one that's trying to alter history in their favor.

In what sounds like a mix between Quantum Leap and Back to the Future, Darkest of Days deputizes you as a time agent, and charges you with missions to visit traumatic events in history to set things right. Expect to visit a variety of scenarios often left untouched by your average shooter like the Battle of Antietam during the American Civil War, the WWI Battle of Tannenberg, and the volcanic eruption of Vesuvius that buried Pompeii.

But don't expect the freedom to mow down hostile forces indiscriminately. Kill the wrong person, and you could change the course of history for the worse. After all, messing with the past can cause complications, and Darkest of Days ' gameplay will reflect the sensitive nature of the channels of time.

This presents a problem when hostiles who need to survive for the sake of the future are standing between you and your destination. Disabling them by shooting out their legs or sneaking around are some options for working your way around dilemmas like this. Eventually, you may even find yourself under attack by other time hoppers trying to stop you from accomplishing your goals.

Darkest of Days' unique premise seems ripe for plot twists aplenty. We're expecting some backtracking to stop yourself from doing things you did earlier in the game, and some juicy revelations about the true intentions of the organization you serve. With its interactive take on time and settings that span the course of history into the future, Darkest of Days has our interest piqued. Expect more news as the game's 2008 release draws closer. In the meantime, visit the Images tab above to check out the first screens.

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