Hi everyone! We’ve got another fantastic month lined up for our PlayStation Plus members this October. Don’t forget, if you visit the PS Store and purchase a one year membership before 20th September we will give you an additional 90 days at no extra cost* – that’s 15 months for the price of 12 (€49.99/£39.99)!
New PlayStation 3 games:
This October PlayStation Plus will be bringing another huge title to our members – Ubisoft’s FPS masterpiece Far Cry 3.
In this open world adventure you take on the role of Jason Brody, a young man stranded on the lawless tropical paradise of Rook Island, a place ruled by piracy and misery. After escaping the clutches of the mentally unstable, slave trading, pirate leader Vaas, Jason must transform himself from coward to killer in an attempt to save his family and friends.
The people at Capcom should be no strangers to establishing a new IP on the market. Since the Japanese company introduced their first multi-part franchise in the mid ’80s with Ghosts ‘n Goblins, they have been known for establishing franchises that run for many years. Along with such legendary titles as Street Fighter and Mega Man, this strategy has enabled them to create and develop things such as, in particular, the survival-horror genre.
However, it was interesting to meet Resident Evil 4 and Devil May Cry producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi at gamescom and to watch him demonstrate Capcom’s latest offering, Dragon’s Dogma. What was shown on the screen in the tiny booth was neither slugfest nor survival-action title, nor a new approach for an arcade concept either. What Capcom had announced in April, probably more out of sheer habit, as action-adventure was in fact the first open-world RPG in Capcom’s 33-year history.
Indeed, with Dragon’s Dogma Capcom is not abandoning their extensive expertise in action gameplay; however, the presentation at gamescom focused mainly on the most basic aspect of an RPG game: the forming of game groups to enable the player to engage in combat with up to three followers or “Pawns”.
In the beginning of Dragon’s Dogma, you are immediately confronted by a dragon that rips out your still-beating heart and flies away. Your quest is to track down the dragon and discover why he stole your heart and why you can still hear his voice echoing in your head.
At PlayStation’s E3 livestream, Product Manager Mike Schmitt gave a live demo of our E3 build of Dragon’s Dogma. The dragon rears its head, breathes a spout of fire and flies off, paving the way for an intense battle with Orcs and Harpies. It also introduces the Chimera, a monstrosity that combines the attributes of a serpent, goat, and lion. The E3 demo introduces the gameplay concept of “pawns,” or computer-controlled companions that aid you in the fight.
Dragon’s Dogma is not an RPG. The development team has previously masterminded the Devil May Cry games, Resident Evil 4, Killer 7, and many more. This team likes action, and that fact shines in Dragon’s Dogma — a game with fast, stylized combat in an open world filled with massive beasts. This is Capcom‘s first open-world game and is powered by the powerful in-house engine MTFramework, responsible for other PS3 games including Resident Evil 5 and Lost Planet 2. That allows us to have an open world without sacrificing the graphical quality you expect from Capcom games.
Aside from the fast action, we’re also introducing new mechanic that adds an extra dose of mayhem. At any time in the game, you can grab enemies, large or small, and interact with them. If it’s an Orc, you can grab him and slay him. Once he’s dead, you can pick him up and use him as bait to lure a soaring Griffin to the ground. When the Griffin lands, you’re able to tackle the beast and start stabbing. When it takes off, hold on for dear life. Eventually, you’ll set fire to the Griffin’s wings, sending you and the beast crashing to the ground.
Check out gameplay videos of the Chimera and the Griffin on Capcom-Unity.com, and look forward to more information soon! Dragon’s Dogma releases for the PS3 in early 2012.
Dragon’s Dogma is a new intellectual property from the creators of Devil May Cry 4 and Resident Evil 4. And while it resembles another Capcom series featuring monsters and the hunting thereof, we’re promised a unique experience when the game launches in “early 2012″
I played a short demo and met with the game’s director, Hideaki Itsuno, and it’s producer, Hiroyuki Kabayashi, at CAPCOM’s Captivate event in Miami last week.
“While they may have some superficial similarities, they are very different games at heart,” explains Hideaki when asked about comparisons to Monster Hunter. “One key difference is that Dragon’s Dogma has an overarching story whereas in Monster Hunter the focus is on the hunt.”
In a nutshell, Dragon’s Dogma is an open-world action adventure set in a world of swords, sorcery and enormous, deadly monsters. “When I was at junior high school I was really taken in by The Lord of the Rings, so I’m sure that has had a strong influence,” explains Hideaki. “You can expect to see a lot of those creatures from Greek and Norse mythologies that fantasy fans will be familiar with.”
“While we don’t share a common history and mythology, Japan has had access to the same pop culture experiences over the last 30 years, and I think that Japanese people do like fantasy games, movies and books. Because of that, we have the same working knowledge of myths and creatures such as the Hydra and the Griffin and people in Europe and America do.”
Dragon’s Dogma has been in development for three years and currently has more people working on it than any other Capcom game. “This is a game that I have wanted to make for many years,” Hideaki adds. “I’ve never felt that we had the technology in place to take on a project of this scale. Now, we have consoles powerful enough and a development team at Capcom knowledgeable enough to bring this vision to life.”
The demo playable in Miami was a quest to take down a Griffin using the Strider – one of three character classes alongside Mage and Fighter – and the flexibility of the combat was the aspect that most stuck in my mind. You’ve got your standard sword melee attacks and daggers for very close combat. You can grab on to the griffin’s wing and hack away as you both fly across the verdant fields or have your mage enhance your weapons with fire and take it down with a volley of flaming arrows.
I went back four times overall to experiment with different solutions to the same boss fight, which is impressive pulling power considering I also had Street Fighter X Tekken and Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City at my disposal (more on those later in the week).
Your three accomplices in monster-bashing are a key part of the gameplay and are known as Pawns. You can issue commands to them using the directional buttons and they respond with tips along the lines of “Orcs hate fire” and “deploy the rolled-up newspaper” (I made the second one up), and they can develop abilities of your choosing. Interestingly, there are more than 200 individual NPCs in the game world, each with spoken dialog and a full 24-hour daily routine, and any of them can be recruited as Pawns and then customised to your needs.
We are told that there will be “a brand-new approach to multiplayer” but were unable to squeeze out any further details. The answer to that other ubiquitous interview question is that the main quest is expected to deliver around 30 hours of gameplay, not counting side quests.
As you can see from these screens and trailer, Dragon’s Dogma is a looker and we’ll be keeping an eye on it here at PlayStation.Blog. Feel free to ask questions and look out for more Capcom posts later in the week based on my time with Street Fighter X Tekken, Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, Dead Rising 2: Off the Record and more.