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Solasta: Crown of the Magister Features Trailer and Previews
Preview - posted by Infinitron on Tue 19 May 2020, 01:42:23Tags: Mathieu Girard; Solasta: Crown of the Magister; Tactical Adventures
Since the conclusion of the Solasta: Crown of the Magister Kickstarter campaign back in October, developer Tactical Adventures have continued to publish development updates and community polls on a weekly basis. These have generally been too incremental in nature to post here. Today however Solasta reached a major milestone with the release of a new features trailer that showcases the current state of the game, including character creation, exploration and combat.
Once you have assembled your party of four, it's time to start the game up, at which point you will be greeted by a cutscene. This is where Solasta's stories will be told, through fully voiced dialogue, with each character determined by you just prior. A high elf scholar will, for example, speak formally, with grace and confidence.
As each of the four tells their separate stories between chugs of ale, each character will take you through a specific tutorial section. For example, we were shown how to sneak out of prison as the team cleric and while escaping, we also got to see how Solasta utilises verticality and, quite honestly, we were blown away. The game doesn't just let you climb ladders, you'll get to actually traverse as if you were playing an exploration-based platformer but with a classic isometric RPG control scheme. Manipulate your environments, jump across gaps, crawl through holes in the walls, climb foliage - you can essentially do anything, truly. When we tell you that you can manipulate your environments we don't just mean that you can press a button or move a rock. You can destroy entire bridges if you wish to.
The next tutorial we got to see showed off basic combat mechanics (with some cool twists added). In the tutorial scenario, our dwarven fighter was to cross a bridge over a beautiful flowing river (but oh lord, our hero was a bit too high up) but wolves were both on his heels and blocking his path on the other side. The scenario revealed some classic RPG mechanics such as attacks of opportunity (i.e. attacking automatically when an enemy gets too close) and being able to see the turns of each character in the battle at the top of the screen (this is, of course, a tactical advantage).
A cool mechanic that was perfect to show during this tutorial stage was 'shove', a simple move to push enemies back. In this case, however, that shove threw the targeted wolf all the way down into the abyss below. As with all other moves, you won't succeed in everything you do since it's an initiative-based game. As the fighter finally reached the other side of the bridge, the wolves were still following him, prompting our hero to interact with a large rock standing on an elevation and pushing it off and onto the stone foundation of the bridge, causing it to collapse (which was oh so satisfying). Later on during the demo, we learned that the combat also offers plenty of vertical manoeuvres, not just linked to climbing or standing on various elevations but also levitation and flying, which is then cause for deeper strategic thinking. A thing to note, however, is the fact that you won't be controlling a singular character; you created your dynamic quartet and they're your responsibility now, but don't worry, if you learn how to combine their strengths, the characters will synergise perfectly, which is precisely what you want. Keep track of status effects (i.e. buffs and debuffs) and approach your enemies with tactics in mind and you'll do just fine - we hope.
Apart from this, light is a huge focus in Solasta, both in and out of combat as the game features a dynamic day/night cycle. Lighting, no matter if it's natural or conjured, has an impact on what you and your enemies can see, changing gameplay depending on what time of day you reach an area. The lighting doesn't just seem like an interesting and surprisingly deep aspect, it also brings exceptional beauty to the stark and stunning environments, of which there are many (get ready as it looks like we're going to get to explore a massive world in Solasta). In relation to the dynamic day/night cycle, players also need to make sure to rest and eat every 24 hours to keep their team at their best.
For us, Solasta: Crown of the Magister came out of the leftfield and from knowing very little to having seen the game in action, we're truly excited to see where Tactical Adventures takes things. From the intricacy of the real-time dice roll and the in-depth character creation through to the beautiful and manipulatable environments and the consequential use of light, we were hooked straight away. If what's to come continues to build on what we've just seen, we're sure that this is going to be one to watch as it gets closer to a full release.
The game looks awesome. Hopefully we'll get to see more of this build ourselves.