Gods & Heroes: Rome Rising - hands-on

The level looks like a Roman reenactment of the Omaha beach landing. Fleets of Roman ships sail towards the shore in the background while giant parabolic mirrors on the isle focus the sun’s beams to ignite their sails. You’ll need to push back hordes of enemies with the help of your party and squads to take out these mirrors to ensure the ships’ safe passage before confronting the final boss. Although this level wasn’t completely finished when we saw it, the Isle of Archimedes foreshadows potential greatness for Gods & Heroes’ end-game content.

On the visual front, battles in Gods & Heroes definitely have a much more cinematic feel to them. With more sets of animations for enemies and avatars, fights have a visceral give-and-take feel as your character gracefully dodges blows or suffers humiliating attacks – like the bite-sized Pit Grunt that knocked us down and repeatedly smashed us over the head with his hammer. You’ll still initiate combat with mouse clicks and activate skills with the traditional bars, but because animations are specific to each type of enemy and type of attack, the fluid confrontations in Gods & Heroes are a nice breather from the usual.

But despite our overall positive impressions, it’s what we didn’t see that really piqued our interest. Plans for a PvP system where you eventually find yourself battling in coliseums found in the largest of cities sounded especially groovy. The game is currently in closed beta, so unless you’re one of the lucky few with a beta key, you won’t be able to play the game until later this summer. But you won’t need no stinking keys to check out the latest screens and trailers of Gods & Heroes. Just click on the Images and Movies tabs above for a sneak peek.


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