Multiplayer mode in action games used to be a simple affair--your only goal was to kill everything that moved. However, the gameplay has evolved quite a bit from those early days, and now, some of the most popular multiplayer modes require you to fight as a member of a team in a huge virtual war. That's certainly the idea behind the crusade mode in Dark Messiah of Might and Magic, the upcoming action game set in the popular Might and Magic fantasy universe. Instead of fighting with rifles and shotguns, you'll be armed with swords and magic. You'll also be doing a lot more than just participating in random battles.
The crusade campaign is sort of like the conquest mode in the popular Battlefield games. Two teams will fight for control points on a level, and when someone dies, it costs the team a ticket to respawn back into the fight. The team that runs out of tickets first loses the round. However, the crusade goes even further by linking the levels together. All the levels are linked in a chain, and every time you win, you advance toward the enemy's stronghold; every time you lose, the enemy advances toward your stronghold. The winning team is the one that can battle toward the enemy team's stronghold and defeat them there. And while the campaign is going on, your character becomes even more powerful, as you gain experience and unlock new powers and abilities. Once a campaign concludes, a new campaign will begin, and everyone starts from scratch, in terms of powers and abilities.
We previously covered the mage and the archer classes, but now we've got the details for the assassin, priestess, and warrior classes. Learn more about the skills and abilities you'll be able to unlock during the course of a campaign, which will affect your overall strategy. Dark Messiah will ship toward the end of the month.
The assassin is the nimble scout of the game, capable of sneaking behind enemy positions and striking from behind. To aid in this, the assassin has various powers of invisibility that can be unlocked as you gain experience throughout a campaign. And, the assassin can plant nasty little traps for the enemy.
|Arterial Strike||It's not enough to stab someone--the arterial strike lets you twist the blade, resulting in a nasty wound.|
|Cloak||Level 1: You are invisible. |
Level 2: You are invisible longer.
Level 3: You are invisible even longer, thanks to an expensive new cloak.
Level 4: Maximize the duration of your invisibility, thanks to training and experience.
|Disguise||Level 1: You look like a member of the enemy team, and your team color changes. However, enemy players will be able to detect you by comparing your name with the names on their team list. |
Level 2: You look like a member of the enemy team for a longer period of time.
|Poison Orbs||Basically land mines, these explosive traps wait for someone to approach and trigger them.|
|Feign Death||You fall to the ground and pretend that you've been killed.|
|Poison Dagger||Level 1: Your dagger is coated with poison that disorients a victim. |
Level 2: An additional coat of neurotoxin will make your victim hallucinate.
|Stalk||Level 1: Your footsteps are muffled, making it harder for you to be heard |
Level 2: Your footsteps are muffled even further, thanks to silk pads and moss.
Level 3: You move like a cat and make almost no noise.
|Second Breath||Level 1: Boosts your stamina bar, giving you the ability to make more special moves. |
Level 2: Your stamina is increased considerably.
|Triggered Poison Orbs||You can lay these traps and then detonate them using the alternate attack button.|
PriestessThe priestess is the "healer" class, capable of healing fellow teammates and resurrecting them if they die. However, always keep in mind that if a priestess resurrects someone, that person's life force is now tied to that of the priestess. If the priestess is killed, everyone she has resurrected instantly dies as well. Meanwhile, the priestess isn't just a support class, because she can also dish out some damage on her own.
A priestess can specialize in restoration or corruption. If you choose restoration mastery (preserver), you gain a large cure bonus, but at a heavy cost of your curse ability. Restoration affinity gives you a slightly smaller cure bonus, but it doesn't impact your curse ability as much. Spiritual balance means that your abilities are unchanged. Corruption affinity gives a slight bonus to curse, but also a slight reduction to curse. And Corruption mastery gives you a maximum bonus to curse, though with a corresponding reduction in cure.
|Blindness||Level 1: Blinds the target of this spell; really useful against archers. |
Level 2: The target is blinded for a longer period.
Level 3: The target is blinded for an even longer period.
|Brambles||Level 1: Slow down enemy movement by summoning entangling brambles from the ground. |
Level 2: You can cast an extra brambles spell.
|Restore||Regenerate hit points of friends.|
|Corrupt||Damage is channeled to enemies.|
|Restoration Sphere||This magical bubble will heal all friends within the sphere.|
|Corruption Sphere||This magical sphere damages enemies.|
|Mass Restoration||Boost your teammates' health.|
|Resurrection||Bring a fallen teammate back to life. However, if you die, anyone you resurrected dies too. If you cast resurrection on a fallen enemy, you will eat his soul so he can't be resurrected.|
|Mass Resurrection||Bring all of your fallen teammates back to life. Again, if you die, they die.|
|Poison Cloud||Level 1: A cloud of toxic gas that inflicts damage. |
Level 2: The range and duration of the toxic cloud is increased.
Level 3: Targets caught in the cloud will also begin to hallucinate.
|Soulmark||Magically highlight an enemy for your team. Your teammates will receive bonuses when attacking the target; useful against those stealthy assassins.|
|Stone Skin||This magic mudpack reduces damage inflicted to you.|
The warrior is the "tank" class of the game. Armed with sword and shield, the warrior can hack apart the other classes easily. However, while the warrior is the ultimate melee fighter, he lacks any kind of ranged attack. Other classes would be wise to attack from a distance when battling a warrior. Still, if a warrior can get close in a fight, the odds shift to the guy with a sword.
If two warriors battle, they engage in an elaborate sword duel where the key to winning is to use combat stances to deliver powerful blows to the enemy. For instance, while you can do a simple sword swing by tapping on the left mouse button, holding down that button and moving the mouse in a certain direction will ready a special type of sword strike. And if you're receiving a flurry of blows, you can tap on the right mouse button to parry, or deflect, a sword strike.
The warrior's unlocks allow him to become an even more devastating fighter, or you can focus more on defense so that the warrior lasts longer in a fight.
|Battle Cry||Boost the health of nearby teammates with your war cry.|
|Charge||Bash an enemy using your shield as a weapon.|
|Strength||Inflict more damage with your blows.|
|Combat Ready||You get into combat stances faster, thanks to a lighter blade.|
|Last Stand||If you're cornered, you can give your health a brief boost. However, when this effect wears off you will be wiped out.|
|Leaping Attack||If you have a full stamina bar, charge at an enemy and then leap at the last second. You will deliver a crushing downward blow.|
|Magic Resistance||Level 1: Enemy spells don't work quite as well on you. The only problem is that friendly spells don't work as well either. |
Level 2: Your armor deflects a certain amount of magic.
Level 3: Your armor deflects an even higher amount of magic.
|Reinforced Armor||Level 1: Your armor reduces physical damage. |
Level 2: Your armor reduces even more damage.
Level 3: You have the best armor in the game.
|Safeguard||This force shield protects you and nearby allies. You must crouch to activate it.|
|Second Breath||Level 1: Boosts your stamina bar, allowing you to do more attacks |
Level 2: Boosts your stamina bar even higher, thanks to conditioning.
Level 3: You are in superb shape and have the maximum amount of stamina.