Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 – Dracula’s Vengeance

Gare – Friday, November 8, 2013 1:18 PM
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MercurySteam is developing the sequel to the successful Castlevania reboot, Lords of Shadow, as one of the last major games for current-gen machines. Let us take a look at what we know so far of Gabriel's new adventure.

!Spoiler Alert! If you have not played the first part yet - and planning - then come back later, after you've completed the adventure! :)

Those familiar with the first Lords of Shadow game will most likely not be entirely surprised by the shocking revelation that was presented at the end of the prequel and will serve as the opening for this new title. Our protagonist, once a powerful vampire hunter himself, finally succumbed to the powers of darkness and was reborn as a vampire: he took on the name Dracula, inspired by Bram Stoker's ever-malicious prince of darkness and famed evil-doer of the Castlevania universe. The plot will be multi-layered in terms of chronology: set in the present day with a thousand-year-old Dracula wishing to die, but occasionally showing glimpses of the past in order to let us experience the life of the vampire lord when he was at the height of his power.

Old world

Although it would be an exaggeration to say that the game boasts of a world that could dwarf the likes of Skyrim, Lords of Shadow 2 will nonetheless feature a more open world compared to its painfully linear predecessor, according to the developers; furthermore, it will also drop the previously fix camera and give players full control this time. Exploration is once again key, so is revisiting previous locations encountered during our journey: as in several Castlevania titles (or games similar to Castlevania), we will eventually acquire an arsenal of special abilities that will allow us to access previously closed off areas of the map. In the 2013 Gamescom demo presented to the public, Dracula was shown to control ice in order to completely freeze a nearby waterfall; he then proceeded to climb its solid surface to enter a previously inaccessible area of the environment.

New abilities and weapons

Gabriel's vampiric transformation also left him with a number of new abilities and weapons in the sequel: one of such items is the Void Sword, replacing the prequel's dual magic system. The Void Sword is a vampiric blade that can only be wielded for a limited amount of time – in essence, its use is based on how well we do in combat. As we battle enemies and land successful hits on them, a bar called „Focus” will start filling up – once it reaches its maximum capacity, Dracula will be able to summon the Void Sword to wreak havoc and steal life from his enemies at the same time. However, if get hit even once during combat, our Focus bar depletes and we have to start over. According to MercurySteam, this system forces gamers to play skillfully in order to unleash the power of the Void Sword – boss battles, they told us, will also provide plentiful challenge that mere button-mashing players will not be able to easily triumph over. The basic gameplay itself appeared to undergo no revolutionary changes, however: much like in its predecessor, Lords of Shadow 2 will see players engage in God of War-esque hack and slash combat as well as climbing and platforming pulled straight out of more recent Prince of Persia titles.

Lords of Shadow 2 will simultaneously arrive on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC on February 25 of next year – and with little luck, it will end up being the perfect swan song of the current generation of consoles, as well as a fitting final chapter to Gabriel's tale.

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