A 20-minute gameplay preview for the new Lords of the Collapsed has dropped, and my alert optimism has clearly entered the branch of action for its October 13 absolution date. I've been befitting tabs on this year's soulslikes—I like accepting my agenda face bedfast into the pavement, doesn't amount area it's from—yet Lords of the Collapsed had, until today, been aloof a baby bleep on my radar. That's changed, because this all looks absolutely like my jam.
A avant-garde reimagining of 2014's middling circuit on the formula, 2023's Lords of the Collapsed looks to actual the mistakes of its antecedent by accepting cool with both ambience and mechanics. Gone are the 2014 game's clumsy, beefy animations—it's all been replaced by zippy-looking activity that's pulled a folio from Sekiro: Caliginosity Die Twice.
The bang-up our lantern-bearer is bouncy with—Pieta, She of Adored Renewal—even has whiffs of admired Aphotic Souls bang-up Charlatan Artorias about her, with some accurately telegraphed attacks accustomed some able oomph. It alike looks like some attrition and stance-breaking's accident at about the 1:55 mark, which has my Sekiro: Caliginosity Die Twice-loving affection actual excited.
According to the voiceover, that newfound nippiness is in allotment due to the adeptness to map "up to four added abracadabra or ranged skills" to ambassador buttons for "immediate access". If you've played Remnant: From the Ashes or Remnant 2, it's a little like how you can braid amid affray and ranged action in those amateur (according to PC Gamer's Tyler Wilde). This sounds like a side-step about the acceptable d-pad averseness we're acclimated to from the genre, area you about accept to baddest the appropriate adeptness by scrolling larboard and appropriate afore absolution loose.
We're apparent a few builds, actually—a fire-flinging fist-weapon dervish at about 6:50, as able-bodied as a added acceptable rogue at 12:00 with frost-laden arrows. It's acutely aloof three examples, so I'm about-face my excitement, but it's attractive able for tinkerers so far.
We additionally get a added attending at the awe-inspiring world-states of Adage and Umbral and how they're traversed. The Umbral branch acts as a additional life—a chilling mirror ambit you're flung into back you die—but it's additionally a abode you'll charge to access voluntarily for exploration's sake.
At any time, you can lift up your lantern and accept a blink into the Umbral. But if you appetite to do added than look, you charge to hop over to the added side—it's adamantine to get back, however, and accomplishing so sacrifices the additional attempt you'd about get in Axiom. Oh, and if you blink too long, an Umbral barbarian can rip you a new one through the window, so you shouldn't um-and-ah about it.
There's additionally the "Soul Flay", a accepted adeptness accustomed to you by the black lantern at your hip. It's a anatomy of army control, absolution you breach out the souls of your enemies to advance them, but it's additionally acclimated as an analysis tool. Activating bridges, ripping bottomward barriers—that array of thing. Tyler additionally batten to the game's creative director aback in March, who additionally said you could use it to yoink enemies off ledges or bung souls into gaggles of bad guys like a "bowling ball."
Co-op looks mercifully straightforward. Gone are the canicule of soapstones and scrambling about for aglow graffiti tags. It seems you can aloof accumulation up with your mates at a comatose point, or matchmake yourself with some randoms. Already they're in, they're in. Plus, you can actualize your own comatose credibility to do this at—though it's allegedly expensive, and you can alone accept one up at a time.
The affair that has me absolutely hooked, however, is the gnarly bang-up apparent appear the end of the video. It's a complete aberration that looks like it stomped beeline out of Advance on Titan: a creepy, smiley-faced behemothic with an absolute added duke clawing its way from a acceptable maw to huck fireballs at you. Get this man some indigestion meds, that can't feel good.
It's a appealing acceptable year to be a soulslike fan. Armoured Amount 6 is the border (although we noted recently that it "isn't Apprentice Souls"), Lies of P's audience was accidentally decent, Remnant 2 is a bang (upscaling issues notwithstanding)—and now Lords of the Fallen's abstraction up to attending rad as hell, too. I'm activity to be dying a lot in 2023.