E3 2002: Harbinger

We saw Dreamcatcher's new RPG today. See our thoughts here.

Dreamcatcher has its new action RPG, Harbinger, on display at its booth today, and we got a brief chance to look it over. Harbinger is a Diablo-style overhead game that takes place on a giant ship called the Harbinger. This ship sweeps through planetary systems, stealing the resources from the planets it encounters and decimating their populations. The survivors are absorbed into the ship's own society, where they become slaves.

Harbinger features a multitude of races, three of which are playable. We got to see the standard human class and a much burlier mechlike character called a gladiator. There will be other races besides the playable ones that factor heavily into the story, according to the developer. The evil Vantir, for instance, is a race of beings composed of a lot of amorphous, amoebalike things that work in unison to animate suits of armor. It seems the plot of the game will revolve heavily around the struggle between the various disparate races cooped up inside the Harbinger.

We got to check out a few of the combat elements in Harbinger as we observed the demo. One interesting item that you can obtain and use is a remote robotic camera system that you can then control and use to explore the ship. This camera is armed with rudimentary weapons and will probably make exploring dark areas a somewhat safer proposition. The developer also emphasized the AI of the enemies in Harbinger--often, you'll find that if you alerted enemies to your presence and didn't properly dispose of them, they'll come back to haunt you later in the game.

Harbinger seems to be progressing solidly toward its scheduled fall release, and it should please Diablo fans looking for similar gameplay in a fairly unique new setting. Watch this space for future details as the game gets closer to release.

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