Prepare to die...some more
My first glance of Lords of the Fallen at Bandai Namco's Gamers Day event had me immediately thinking that the game looked like a prettier, next-gen version of Dark Souls. After seeing an extended gameplay demo, I came to see that it's more than just a visual similarity. Lords of the Fallen uses the deliberate combat and try-then-fail-then-try-again concepts Dark Souls players will definitely be used to. Boss battles put you up against challenging, powerful foes and even the common minion can give you quite a bit of trouble if you aren't careful.
In my demo, the developers played through an early section of the game that had the hero navigating the narrow corridors of monster-infested catacombs. As the player was walking through the torch-lit hallways, you get the feeling that something is going to jump out and beat the crap out of you. Thing is, if you're not careful, that's exactly what happens. Enemies generally attack one at a time or in small groups, leaving you to discover which of your magic skills and weapon abilities will penetrate each enemy's tough defenses.
The combat is fast and intricate. Blocking, dodging, and timing your attacks is critical to coming out of a fight alive. Players can choose the typical warrior, rogue, and mage classes that come with the standard class-based weapon sets like sword and shield, dual blades, and magic staffs. But the predefined hero Harken can also launch various magic attacks through his mystical gauntlet. Lords of the Fallen is an intriguing new action RPG. With a story-centric, single-player campaign and flashy, arcade-y combo heavy combat, the game may just stand out despite the obvious Dark Souls influences.
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