Daedalic Entertainment: A Whole Heap of E3 Drops
Greg Johnson / Jun 24th, 2015 No Comments
Daedalic Entertainment had a lot to offer at E3 2015. In fact, the company brought a survival-horror game, two strategy titles and a point-and-click adventure to show off.
We got our hands on Daedalic’s offerings at the Los Angeles Convention Center, and what we saw was unique and exciting.
All Aboard the Bounty Train
Bounty Train is a strategy train manager title. The most interesting thing about this game was the attention to detail put in by developer Corbie Games. Every train that appears in the game was heavily researched so that it could be recreated accurately within Bounty Train.
The game features real historical events and figures, and players have the ability to alter these infamous moments. For instance, gamres can prevent the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. The inventor of the colt pistol can come aboard as a passenger, allowing players to make more gun upgrades. Each city visited also features a relatively true skyline, showing the depth to which this Civil War era game was researched.
Gameplay is fast paced and requires quick thinking from players. In town, players will be able to buy new parts, passengers, crew and cargo before setting forward down the tracks. Any number of events can occur while traveling, from attacks to carriage breakdowns. These random factors shape the experience, and the non-linear story ensures that each playthrough will be different.
Actual gameplay was a bit redundant during our E3 experience, but the random events and ability to constantly upgrade should keep players invested enough to take on new challenges.
Check In, Never Check Out
In the survival-horror game Skyhill, players control a man putting himself up in the top floor of an exclusive hotel during a future World War. A biological outbreak occurs, but due to the altitude and bio-shielding, he is unaffected. His mission becomes one of escaping the hotel via the ground floor, and players must decide which risks are worth taking along the way.
Every movement drains precious energy as the man grows more and more hungry. One way to get food is to initiate fights, but this risky maneuver could end the game entirely. And if you die, don’t expect an easy path back to your dying point. The hotel is randomly generated each time, so while the layout remains the same, what lies in each room does not.
This risk-reward mechanic will keep players’ hearts pounding as they explore the hotel. A mad dash downward could put the player in a no-escape situation, while playing too cautiously may starve the protagonist to desperation. Making your way down to the bottom few floors may entice some players to make a mad dash to the exit, but random enemy encounters could easily drain ill-equipped players.
The Hills are Alive with Valhalla
Valhalla Hills featured gameplay similar to Black & White, but it seems to offer a more specific goal to prevent players from getting off track. Players control a village of Vikings attempting to ascend various hills and gain entry to Valhalla. As players move from island to island, all new technology unlocked through progression will come with them. New islands pose new challenges, but players will get to carry over previously learned building types and upgrades.
The game was incredibly pretty to look at, but gameplay sadly came off as tedious. A lot of leg work will be involved in getting little Vikings to the gates of Valhalla, and it will all be done in a drawn out step-by-step process.
However, Valhalla Hills appears to be rounding out to a solid resource management sim. Rival Vikings and various mystical creatures will stir to prevent players from reaching the top, but proper juggling of progression and defense will ensure victory.
Anna’s Quest to E3
The most appealing of Daedalic’s games was Anna’s Quest, which features amazing storytelling and fluid gameplay mechanics. Based off the work of Dane Krams, this fairytale epic explores one little girl’s quest to help her grandfather. Fans of Grimm’s fairytales will find delight in the twisted nature of the plot while point-and-click aficionados will enjoy the easy to learn controls. What helps Anna’s Quest stand apart aside from the narrative is Anna’s Telekinesis ability, which allows her to manipulate the world and solve puzzles.
Voice acting is featured throughout Anna’s Quest, adding a welcome feature to cover up the awkward silence normally associated with a point-and-click game. Another oddity of note is the graphics, which are dated but ultimately work for the title. Anna’s Quest will be available via Steam beginning July 2.
tags: Anna's Quest , Bounty Train , E3 2015 , preview , Skyhill , Valhalla Hills