Maybe Brendan Fraser, Adam Sandler and Steve Buscemi had a point. The Lone Rangers might have been a terrible name for a band, but at least the three airheads realised that you’re guaranteed a longer lifespan as a unit. So while Captain Rouke apes the quintessential Eastwood-loner, he’s going to be a few bullet holes short of a brain if he decides to go it alone.
So that’s why he’s hitched a ride with the gun-slinging Peacekeepers, a rebel force operating on the outskirts of a futuristic cityscape. They’re both fighting an evil industrial corporation -the Keepers seeking liberation; Rouke’s out for revenge. It is the usual David and Goliath struggle, but set on the backdrop of a steampunk-fueled Western. Oh, and the corporation’s henchmen wouldn’t be averse to afternoon tea and clotted-cream scones. It’s the bowler hats atop those armoured suits that give it away. Cowboys versus English businessmen sounds like classic Monty Python material. But Rouke’s fighting with grit, not laughs.
Damnation is an action adventure where guns and parkour go hand in hand for insuring your survival. The various missions will be based around massive multi-tiered levels, as you make your way across rooftops and ledges to an objective placed higher up in the area. The omission of a HUD system or minimap is a conscious decision by the developer to have you continually check your location by swinging the camera around, to gauge your progress while giving you a sweeping view of the surrounding area thus helping you to appreciate your progress.
But unlike Prince of Persia, higher positions won’t mean safety. The enemy is as swift and nimble as you are. While you can sneak along cliffs and set up sniping points, once you’re spotted, they’ll head straight to you, usually by the same route you took. What results is a lengthy cat and mouse chase sequence along girders and across rooftops. Imagine Assassin’s Creed’s city guards, but smarter. And carrying their own shotguns.