Last Friday, we kicked off the first in our five-part coverage of Shiny and Interplay's upcoming 3D real-time strategy game, Sacrifice. With each update, we'll be profiling one of the five gods in Sacrifice, and we'll be taking a look at the spells and minions they afford players who choose to stand by their side. We'll also be updating the Sacrifice gamespace with screenshots that are specific to that week's god. Lastly, each feature will be premiering the voice of its respective god from the impressive pool of voice talent that Shiny has recently managed to line up. In the spotlight this week is James, the god of earth. Look familiar? James is a tribute to Shiny's original mascot, Earthworm Jim. He's a self-proclaimed simple god who is happiest just watching over his followers. James rules the world of Glebe, a world of rocks, dirt, more rocks, and some more dirt. He wants no part of grand quests, and he certainly isn't a troublemaker. If your wizard allies with James, you'll be guaranteed protection and a solid foundation from which to build your skills - a foundation of granite, that is.
|James describes his world.|
James calls his own special breed of magic "geomancy," which is just a fancy word for earth-type magic. If you choose to ally your wizard with James, you will be able to call upon his mastery of the elemental world to conjure all types of rocks... and rocks. Whether they are used for protection or to inflict pain, rocks are in almost every one of James' magic spells.
Speed up: This spell provides a quick burst of energy to any creature that you target, including your own wizard. Speed up is the perfect spell for a quick getaway when your relationship with the enemy is on the rocks.
Rock: This spell is one of the first ones you'll master as a follower of James. With it, you'll be able to summon a giant boulder to hurl at your enemies.
Heal: Not getting your daily minerals? The heal spell will restore the health of any of your wizard's minions.
Skin of stone: Casting this spell will incase you in a thick skin of stone, the perfect defense against almost any enemy in Sacrifice. What's more is that you won't lose any agility or the ability to cast additional magic while under the effects of this spell.
Soul mole: This spell summons a mole that will burrow its way out to the battlefield and retrieve any lingering blue souls while your wizard remains protected at a distance. The friendly critter will knock down any enemy creatures standing in its way, which will temporarily stun them.
Erupt: There's nothing like a good old-fashioned earthquake to shake things up. When you cast erupt, the ground rises and falls, and sends out shock waves that temporarily stun enemies.
Halo of earth: Halo of earth is another of James' defensive spells, and it rips huge rocks up from the ground and sends them spinning in a circle over your wizard. These rocks will hurl themselves toward any enemy creature that strays too close to you.
Wall of spikes: Wall of spikes can be used as both an offensive or defensive spell. Huge stalagmites rise from the ground and provide a near-impenetrable barrier between you and your enemies. Anything foolish enough to pass through it will take damage and be slowed down significantly.
Bombardment: One of James' deadliest spells, bombardment lifts nearby boulders high into the air and drops them on a wide area of land. The mortar effect is so devastating that the ground becomes forever deformed.
Bovine intervention: Bovine intervention is a signature Shiny spell. Casting it will summon a cow to fly through the air toward your enemies and then cause her to explode in a shower of deadly ground beef. Poor ole Bessie.
Bore: A massive chasm will swallow up anyone too slow to escape the effect of this spell.
By pledging allegiance to a particular god, you will not only have that god's powerful magic spells available to you, but you'll also be able to call upon that god's unique creatures to aid you in your conquests. All of the creatures available to your wizard within Sacrifice fall into one of 11 categories. They are pursuers, scouts, flyers, snipers, bruisers, support, bombers, siege, crowd control, juggernauts, and ultimate. Like every god, however, James only has ten creature types and doesn't have any crowd-control-class minions. Only eight are listed below - you'll have to unlock the last two minions on your own.
Trogg (pursuer): The trogg might seem like simple creatures, and indeed they possess no special abilities whatsoever. But within the network of underground caverns where they live, the trogg have developed ancient spiritual rituals that have given them immunity to all magical damage. Otherwise, the trogg are standard melee fighters.
Earthfling (scout): This humble creature hasn't forgotten its roots. The earthfling is made of soil and dirt, and it flings - hence its name - that soil and dirt at its enemies. The earthfling also has the ability to morph into an invulnerable boulder, which gives it time to heal - like a turtle darting back into its shell.
Gargoyle (flyer): The gargoyle is made of stone, so you'll forgive it if it's a clumsy flyer. However, it does a pretty good job of hovering over the enemy hordes and raining down a shower of sharp rocks. Bless its rocky hearts.
Basilisk (support): Although it's not the biggest creature in James' menagerie, the basilisk's size is impressive nonetheless. It has the unique passive ability of turning enemy minions into stone with a simple gaze. While not permanent, the effect will stop any creature affected by the stone gaze in its tracks. However there is one side effect: Creatures that have been turned to stone take less damage than those unaffected.
Taurock (bruiser): No one is quite sure if the taurock is a bull who's managed to cover himself in rocks, or whether he's a pile of rocks that learned to walk around like a bull. Regardless, he's as tough as nails either way, and he can run down the largest of creatures. Additionally, his defense increases as he takes damage, so the more he gets hurt, the harder he is to kill.
Boulderdash (sniper): This lumbering creature can fire rocks at a very fast rate of speed. What's more is that the boulderdash's projectiles will split into three smaller stones, which can hit multiple targets at once or do three times the damage to a single creature.
Ikarus (bomber): This poor thing is even clumsier at flying than the heavy gargoyle. It's not its fault either, though. The ikarus was never meant to fly but instead was invented by someone who strapped wings onto this creature's arms using nothing more than glue. And it's this same glue that the ikarus uses to drop down on its enemies in order to slow them down for your other minions to attack.
Flummox (siege): Simple cousins of Pyro and Stratos' lummox, the flummox throws boulder-sized rocks at its enemies. Because of their size, these rocks cause the ground to ripple upon impact, which temporarily stuns nearby enemies. The flummox is perfect for disrupting enemies from casting magic spells.
Be sure to visit the Sacrifice gamespace next week when we will unveil the next god in the game. Until then, take a look at the new batch of images in the screenshot gallery, linked at the upper right. And if you missed last week's god profile, take a look at it here.