Hunted: The Demon's Forge Hands-On
This "cover-based dungeon crawler" was playable at Gamescom 2010, so we headed behind closed doors to go check it out.
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Hunted: The Demon's Forge has progressed well following this year's E3 in Los Angeles, where a co-op section of gameplay was on show at the Bethesda booth. Today, just over two months later, the game is now entering its internal beta phase and is starting to come together, content-wise. To celebrate, developer InXile brought a level to Gamescom and allowed us to play it firsthand.
The level in question takes place halfway through the game, as we took control of the warrior Caddoc while the AI took care of the elf archer E'lara. Running straight into combat, we found our weapons would quickly degrade, with impacts on the standard sword and shield meaning we had to replace our sidearms quickly. We also used Caddoc's magic to suspend enemies in midair while E'lara fired arrows at them.
Caddoc and E'lara are both played by what sound like British thespian actors, and the delivery is often quite tongue in cheek. E'lara, who herself is dressed in a ridiculously skimpy outfit, comments on one of her enemies' "sluttiness." InXile's Maxx Kaufman was on hand to explain how the developer is keen to turn the relationship between the two characters on its head, with E'lara keen to run headlong into combat while the more traditional warrior character Caddoc is much more cautious.
The other part of our short demo concerned the new side quests, which are completely optional but will allow you to explore the backstory of the game and improve your characters. You'll be able to find death stones scattered around the world, and when you find them, you can press a button to reach into the spirit world. In the one we saw, a ghost told us to collect the remnants of its bones, which had been scattered in the surrounding area. In this instance, we found them relatively quickly, but Kaufman told us it will be much trickier in the finished game, so you'll have to work to level up your characters.
Hunted: The Demon's Forge is being released on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC in spring 2011. For more on the game, be sure to check out GameSpot's existing coverage, including a preview from the recent QuakeCon event in the US.