Lords of the Fallen was hardly even a blip on my radar, prior to this year's Electronic Entertainment Expo, but 20 minutes of hands-on time with the next big action-RPG from Bandai Namco Games was more than enough to get me excited for the Lords of the Fallen release date.
For those as unfamiliar as I was, Lords of the Fallen is an action-RPG set in a medieval fantasy world that also serves as home to a Fallen God. Worse, your omnipotent overlord also commands a number of Lords and Generals, each of whom also control their own armies and battalions. So Lords of the Fallen isn't exactly going to be lacking in the combat department and, from the sounds of things, could very well end with your protagonist going toe-to-toe with a deity.
To say the game is difficult feels like a bit of understatement. I'm pretty sure I had more luck during my first six hours playing Dark Souls 2, a time when pretty much anyone new to the franchise is dying pretty frequently, than I did during my brief hands-on time with Lords of the Fallen. The game is brutally difficult, to the point that I was actually a bit relieved when it came time to put the controller down, but what little I did manage to complete left me absolutely ravenous for more time with Lords of the Fallen.
While I wasn't given specifics about the sliver of the Lords of the Fallen campaign included in the game's E3 demo, my hands-on time seemed to pick up at some point after the game's protagonist had already partially-cleared one of Lords of the Fallen's many dungeons. For the next twenty or so minutes, I'd do my best to navigate the hallways and underground chambers that I encountered in the unidentified dungeon, but I'd be lying if I said I managed to make all that much progress.
Of course, it wasn't long before I encountered my first couple of enemies, a pair of shambling undead creatures that looked truly horrifying. Not only did the abominations move far faster than I anticipated, several of the creatures actually revived themselves after they'd been killed; an act that definitely took me by surprise during the first of what would be several attempts on the dungeon. And those lined up to try and take my life only seemed to get bigger, stronger and angrier as I made it farther and farther into the Lords of the Fallen demo.
Though it's presumably not indicative of every dungeon in the game, the Lords of the Fallen demo included a number of lengthy corridors, forcing me to try and do battle with one or more creatures while unable to circle-strafe my enemy(s). The lack of extra space forces you to engage with the game's rather complex battle system, which sees both players and enemies regularly blocking/parrying incoming attacks, and to make creative use of your surroundings anytime the odds are stacked up against you.
Of course, not every enemy need be slain directly, either. While Lords of the Fallen does appear to take at least a couple of cues from the Souls franchise, it seems to offer a far greater variety of environmental hazards that can be used against the forces of evil. A prime example of such hazards arrived relatively early in the demonstration, when a brutish guard with a massive tower shield chased me all the way back down one of the demo's many corridors, only to plummet to his death when he attempted to follow me across the wooden covering of a pit trap.
A number of attacks in Lords of the Fallen will also inflict knockback damage, including a handful of spells that were included in the demo, giving players the ability to inflict a little extra damage if/when using an attack that pushes its target off a ledge or into a trap of some kind. And, if we're being honest, it seems like players will need to take advantage of such opportunities if they have any real desire to conquer the Lords of the Fallen campaign.
Unfortunately, that's about all I know about Lords of the Fallen at this time. According to a new fact sheet from Bandai Namco, most of the lore from the game will be discovered over the course of the Lords of the Fallen campaign, similarly to the way that players learn about Drangleic by paying especially close attention to character dialogue, item descriptions, etc. The team also says that players will be able to focus on acquiring specific classes of gear (Warrior, Rogue and Cleric) or mix-and-match items from various sets to create the build you need to get pass a specific part of the Lords of the Fallen campaign.
Fortunately, with Lords of the Fallen scheduled to debut on October 28, we shouldn't have to wait all that much longer for new information and/or gameplay footage from Bandai Namco's latest action-RPG. Let's just hope the rest of the campaign shows as much promise as the brief Lords of the Fallen gameplay demo that was available at E3 2014.
Be sure to check back with iDigitalTimes.com and follow Scott on Twitter for ongoing coverage of Lords of the Fallen as we keep a close watch on the latest action-adventure game from Bandai Namco in the months leading up to the Lords of the Fallen release date.
Have you been following development of Lords of the Fallen over the last few months? Have an idea for an environmental hazard you'd like to see included in the game? Worried that Lords of the Fallen will feel too much like a Dark Souls clone?
Let us know in the comments section!