E3 2011 is the place where new games and new game content are shown, and as it happens, one game showing off new content is Vindictus, the free-to-play, persistent-world, 3D beat-'em-up from publisher Nexon. While this colorful online action game powered by Valve Software's Source engine has been out in the wild for some time, it continues to receive postlaunch content updates. The next update is scheduled to launch on June 15 and will bring with it Karok, the brawler.
Karok is a mountain of a man who wields a massive stone pillar as his weapon in battle, though he can apparently swap this out for a massive hammer during later levels. The character can wear heavy armor and has the unique ability to parry the attacks of boss monsters--all other characters in the game are forced to either dodge the attacks of Vindictus' massive bosses or get knocked flat. Karok moves noticeably more slowly than other characters in the game but hits extremely hard and finishes off low-level foes in a couple of hits.
We played through a very brief instance--the latter part of the new dungeon that is debuting on the 15th--to hack through a few low-level bad guys before finally challenging the boss, a huge demonic humanoid wearing heavy armor and wielding a massive blade. Because Karok doesn't have the speed of a Lann or a Fiona, we had trouble avoiding some of this brute's incoming attacks, but tenaciously getting back on our feet (and respawning a couple of times) did the job, and we eventually defeated it. This powerful critter is one of two new raid bosses being added to the game along with this new dungeon, the brawler character, and an entirely overhauled dungeon visit system. Previously, you needed to possess in-game tokens to hop onto the boat that dropped you off at the next dungeon so that you could hunt monsters, gain treasures, and gain experience. In-game tokens were originally in short supply (though they could be purchased from the in-game cash-op for real-world money). As of June 15, the token system goes away completely, and all players can hop onto the boat as often as they like.