Games 2011: Neverdead

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In the world of video games, protagonists do not typically endure a close range grenade explosion. Normally you will see a game over screen after the grenade goes boom. In Neverdead, however, dismemberment and death is only the onset of a unique new game mechanic.

The hero, Bryce, is an immortal who can resist any manner of punishment and arrange himself back together whenever needed. When he opposed and lost against the demon king 500 years back, he was paid back/cursed with an invincible demon body. Over the centuries he’s evolved into sort of a jerk and has started the trade of demon hunting.

Shinta Nojiri, producer on the Konami side for this game, came up with the original idea and supervises design while Rebellion builds up the game using its proprietary engine.

“At the beginning I wanted to make a game with an immortal guy, but I needed to make it different from the others because immortality is a common theme in movies and novels and also in games,” Nojiri says. “I conceived the idea to make the player dismembered. He’s kind of like a zombie, but not a zombie.”

In the short footage seen of the third-person action title, Bryce handles two pistols in baile versus the demon horde. If he gets whopped especially hard, his torso will separate totally from his head and limbs. Players then command the head and must roll over to the other body parts to return into the action. Any order works, so you can have an arm protruding on the side of a rolling head and still blast wildly at your enemies. When you get your torso next, you will crawl about having no legs. Reattaching one leg affords you to hop around clumsily until you gather up the next.

Bryce does not have to wait for an enemy to take him apart . He can decide to rip off various parts of his body if it befits him. If there is a particularly high ledge he can’t reach or small place he needs to get through, he could rip his head off and toss it in the needed direction. Bryce can also cast his arm and still shoot his gun remotely, which is particularly strange when dog-like demons pick the limb up and run all over while the pistol’s firing. Somehow he can also blow up his thrown limbs like a remote controlled grenade. Using the environment to his advantage is a different option. Bryce can demolish ceilings to bring down rubble on top of himself and all of the surrounding demons. They will all be toast, while he simply rolls out of the wreckage.

Cooperative and competitive multiplayer are confirmed, but Konami isn’t uttering specifics just yet. It wouldn’t be surprise if the second player took hold of the female government agent Arcadia, who partners with Bryce in the single-player campaign. Since she’s a normal human, we wonder how Rebellion will make her as fun to play as Bryce. We’re also curious as to how the dismemberment mechanic will apply to competitive multiplayer. Punting an opponent’s head to the different end of the map after you have taken him down seems like a fun possibility.

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