Stab Palette: Dishonored Gets Creative With Its Lethality

Following on from the “Daring Escapes” trailer, Dishonored shows off more game-footage with “Creative Kills”. This time we get to see a wide range of uses for Dishonored various powers, all of them pertaining to the dispatching of enemies. Ugly business. But what’a pretty game. And I get to play more of it at GamesCom next week. It’s a hard life.


  1. dontnormally says:

    I like turtles.
    …and creative deaths.

  2. Linfosoma says:

    Im so very much looking forward to this game, but 60 bucks? Im going to hold out for a sale.

    • woodsey says:

      Odd, it’s the regular £30 price tag on Steam in the UK.

      • Unaco says:

        I was gonna ask “how can you see it on Steam in the UK?” because I haven’t been able to find it… The links that others gave led to a “not available in your region” page, as did the trailer link on the front of the Store page, and the only thing showing for ‘dish’ was a game called “Hot Dish”. I thought it was another case of a cross platform game being held off Steam until release.

        But it is there now… It’s not showing in the suggestions when you search, but if you go through to see all the results, it’s appearing. And it’s in Bethesda’s ‘Coming Soon’ section. And you can watch the trailer etc. So yay!

        • woodsey says:

          When you type in the search box, press space after typing ‘Dishonored’ – comes up as a suggestion for me then.

          • pqmnwsd6 says:

            That’s it, I haven’r preordered in years, but I am preordering this one. Harvey Smith+Arcane

      • Trithne says:

        It’s eighty dollars in Australia. Which is… £54, or US$84.

        For a digitally delivered game.

        No Oceans, right guys?

    • Iskariot says:

      Where I live it is €50, on Steam and I can buy it for €40 retail (including shipping).

      • JoeGuy says:

        It’s €25.97 to buy a physical copy (€27.97 with Delivery) in Ireland,
        – They even deliver to the UK for the exact same price.

        link to

        Don’t know if it’s a mistake, but the order is paid for. I specifically said I wouldn’t buy the game till
        it was half price because of all the pre-order shenanigans so this was a nice compromise tbh.

  3. Network Crayon says:

    Now im sure that many people have gone over this in depth, but it still suprises me how much like Half Life 2 this looks. I’m not complaining and probably having played the game it’self the resemblence wont be so obvious, but it still remarkably similar artisticly.

    • kud13 says:

      same art director may have somehtign to do with it.

      • Trithne says:

        Damn, beaten to it. But yes. The same man behind the design. And more City 17 is never bad.

        • Network Crayon says:

          Oh is it? Thats actually quite cool that you can see one guys vision across multiple games. I don’t feel so baffled anymore!

          • gstaff says:

            Viktor Antonov (creator of City 17 in HL2) is the visual design director at ZeniMax and worked closely with Sebastien Mitton and the rest of the Arkane art team.

  4. Shooop says:

    This looks like too much fun to be only one game.

  5. Maritz says:

    Call me cynical, but how many of these powers do you think you’ll use more than once or twice for the novelty value, before settling on two or three most effective ones that you’ll then use for the rest of the game?

    Unless, I suppose, the level / scenario design is varied enough that almost all of the powers need to be applied fairly frequently.

    • obie191970 says:

      If they are all viable then it will be fun to experiment. I know I played around with all the different plasmids in Bioshock.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      This is very much a game where you should be making your own fun. You’ll most likely be able to go through the entire game just shooting at enemies and it’ll be the most “efficient” way, but then you only have yourself to blame if you find the game boring.

      • SuperNashwanPower says:

        That was something I loved about the Crysis games. More so C1 and Warhead, but even C2 I found that as well. The more you experimented with the toys, the more fun it got. I loved putting a bit of C4 down at my feet, loosing off a round so the guards came over, then jump-cloaking up onto a nearby hut. Set off the C4 when they inspect the now empty spot :)

        I never experimented with sticking C4 to crabs and seeing if they would wander into Korean camps. Hmmmmm. Time to re-install I think.

    • Mordsung says:

      It’s called emergent gameplay my friend.

      Give us a sandbox with lots of cool toys and we’ll make our own fun.

      Only when you’re given a goal do you start thinking about stuff like using “the most effective” weapon.

      The looser they make the goals, the more we’re allowed to experiment.

    • Shooop says:

      That’s the beauty of this game’s sandbox – you pick what powers you like best and if there’s any you don’t like you just don’t use them. It’s not looking like Deus Ex HR where you have to use a specific power in a certain place to get a result. You make up your own rules on the go.

      • KenTWOu says:

        It’s not looking like Deus Ex HR where you have to use a specific power in a certain place to get a result.

        In Deus Ex HR I can use ‘punch through wall’ aug (specific power) to break the weakened wall, I can use my guns to break the wall, I can use frag grenade or wall mine to break the wall or I can throw a box or a barrel to break exactly the same weakened wall. Yeah, DXHR has less freedom than Dishonored because of many reasons: limitations of the setting, less creative developers, etc… But it still has it.

    • JohnnyMaverik says:

      Who consistently used all of the plasmids in Bioshock? Shouts in Skyrim? Abilities in Deus Ex HR? Just because you aren’t using something doesn’t mean nobody is. Plus it means you can go back through the game and see what it’s like using everything you ignored the first or even second and third times through. Re playability and choice is never a bad thing as long as it’s placed under sensible constraints, e.g. swimming being pretty much pointless for the most part in Deus Ex 1, which was pretty misleading to first timers, or not being able to everything you might like to do in Fable 3 because you accidentally lock yourself into the end game, but just having lots to do and lots of ways to do it isn’t bad, it’s fking great.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Swimming was useful at least once. REAL men put all their points into Environmental Training.

      • kud13 says:

        I’ve said this before: There are at least 12 instances where having stacked Swimming and Aqua lung was useful (and yes, you could use re-breathers for some of those. but not all)

  6. mckertis says:

    So wait, this guy doesnt have a physical body to leave when possessing someone ? Now why would i NOT possess an enemy for 100% of the time ?

    Also, did someone on the thief comments said THIS game will be like Thief ? No clip i saw gave me Thief vibes, at all.

    • obie191970 says:

      This is a stealth mission from the E3 demo. Part 2 they go full on assault for the same mission.

    • Trithne says:

      the astral-projection-into-someone ‘possession’ bugs me too, but I suspect it’s to 1) Facilitate certain design ideas they had like possessing a fish to travel through a sluice, and 2) Simplify the issue of someone finding your body and killing you, suddenly jerking the player to a dead state. Which cuts both ways really, since as you say, why wouldn’t you just possess everyone any time it became worthwhile? I mean see how much they use it in the videos.

    • Shooop says:

      You can only be in another body for a limited time. And you have limited mana of which little regenerates.

      The developer commentary for previous videos said they gave the demos unlimited mana so everyone could go wild with the powers.

      • Trithne says:

        Well that makes sense.

        It’s not going to stop me getting it, but I really want an explanation for that possession mechanic though. It’s just so full of questions.

        • Shooop says:

          Yeah there are limits on how long you can possess someone or something in the full game. The timers vary based on what enemy type they are. Rats I think can be held the longest and Tallboys the shortest.

        • Unaco says:

          Small story spoiler (although nothing that isn’t from the intro and hasn’t been revealed already): Your character, Corvo, is approached and assisted by another character called ‘The Outsider’ in jail at the start. The Outsider is some sort of local, supernatural deity – part angel, part devil. He gives the player the mask that they wear, as well as the ‘Mark of the Outsider’ or something, the tattoo on the back of Corvo’s left hand. I would assume that this is where the play obtains their supernatural abilities… teleporting, bending time, and the possession. Further, I’d assume there’d be something about the powers coming from the Outsider to explain the nature of the possession… that it’s how the Outsider moves and does what he does.

          From a gameplay angle though, it does have some implications. Primarily, it means that if the possessed creature dies during the possession, then so does Corvo. So you’ll have to keep that in mind. Also, things like possession allowing you to actually move Corvo, by entering and exiting at different places. It also means that you won’t be leaving some mindless, empty body lying around to get shot up while you’re halfway across the map.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Which is why the spring-razor-rat combination is interesting; if you look, Corvo’s getting sliced up too and has a damage marker on-screen. I suspect that doesn’t work on harder difficulties since you can’t both drive the rat into place and get clear again.

      • gstaff says:

        Mana is definitely a premium in the game. We do allow some mana to recharge enough to use the Blink functionality, which is keep to traversing the game.

    • LionsPhil says:

      I believe there are time/magic-juice limits on posession, which scale to how “powerful” your posessee is.

  7. Syra says:

    I could do that friendly fire stuff all day long..

    • LionsPhil says:

      I love the explosive oil battery juggling.

      • Unaco says:

        I’m liking it all to be honest. That throw, blink, throw with the oil/explosive is brilliant though, and I reckon it was one of those things that emerged, rather than being planned for… Like that story the Devs had about a playtester combining the blink and long jump abilities, something Devs had never thought of, to get to inaccessible areas… they considered it, and whether it would be a problem. And then they realised that this is the sort of thing they actually want to happen.

        Although, a very small part of me wishes I hadn’t actually watched it now, and rather I’d came across or come up with these tactics myself. I’m sure there’ll be plenty more to ‘invent’ for myself though.

  8. Obc says:

    why are there raindrops running down my eyeballs?….

    • werix says:

      Because they are actually running down the fancy goggles of that skull shaped mask you happen to be wearing.

  9. Zwebbie says:

    So, please do ignore me if I’m being too whiny, but I find this enthusiasm for Dishonored hard to reconcile with John’s angry post about its pre-order scheme. On one hand the Hivemind writes a piece in which it’s angry enough TO WRITE IN CAPS, the next week it’s acting as Bethesda’s marketing branch with three posts since. Is RPS cross with Dishonored or is it trying to get me excited for the game?

    • Shooop says:

      They love the game, but they hate the marketing. And I do too.

      They purposely don’t talk about pre-orders in the same articles they do hands-on previews because they’re different subjects.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      It’s almost as if they’re trying to deliver balanced journalism or something.

    • LionsPhil says:

      Developers good. Make muchlyfun game. Yes.
      Publishers bad. Pull stupid stunts disrupting give money for funs. Badbad.

      (…mentats may have worn off.)

    • woodsey says:

      You can be excited for a game whilst decrying the industry’s increasingly stupid pre-order nonsense.

    • Zwebbie says:

      Yeah, I get what you’re all saying, but does anyone really think Bethesda’s even slightly incentivised to change policy when there are also 22 positive articles on RPS?

      It’s a bit like those Modern Warfare 2 boycotters who were terribly cross with MW2, but not quite cross enough to actually sacrifice something themselves.

    • povu says:

      I don’t see why RPS should focus on the pre-order DLC of Dishonored so much when it’s pretty innocent compared to what companies usually. Yes it sucks, but in the end it’s a bunch of passive bonuses, nothing big. Nothing that I would label as actual ‘content’.

      Meanwhile Assassins Creed 3’s special/pre-order stuff offers unique weapons and missions.

  10. Xardas Kane says:

    That’s it, I haven’r preordered in years, but I am preordering this one. Harvey Smith+Arcane Studios+VIctor Antonov=GOTY. How many games, especially nowadays, give you so much creativity when approaching different situations? And bear in mind that you don’t even have to kill anyone the entire game. Including your targets.

  11. Bart Stewart says:

    This video reminds me of the “Kill Kevin” video from Arkane’s previous game, Dark Messiah of Might & Magic.

    The video was a collection of clips showing the many ways that poor Kevin the Goblin (from Arkane’s even earlier game Arx Fatalis) could be dispatched, from setting him on fire to kicking him off a cliff or into one of the many conveniently-placed metal spikes.

    Dishonored appears to enable even more forms of environmental/physics-based death.

    I hope Kevin has a cameo as well.

  12. Somerled says:

    Can’t watch this. I want to discover this stuff for myself.

  13. Synesthesia says:

    damn, this will make me sound old, but am i the only one that worries this will be another of the games that make you a bit too powerful, killing all the fun and ambience? The insta infinite respawn in bioshock nearly killed the game for me for certain.

    • GepardenK says:

      There is no infinite enemies, that is confirmed.
      The game itself has been described as hard by some previewers. They died many times over even when plaing on medium and with all the powers unlocked (something that is not possible to achieve in the full game). So I wouldn’t worry too much about that

      Dishonored seems like it’s designed with a kind of razor edge type combat. So if you get it right you can kill lots easily, but one mistake and you pay hard.

      The usage of powers is apparently very limited unlike what we see in the videoes due to mana constraints and the need for potions to regenerate it. So powerfull spells can not be used very often in a mission

    • gstaff says:

      matt from Bethesda here.

      It’s definitely not an easy game, but for the purpose of showing off supernatural abilities, we called about some expert players to show off skills in the game.

      Freezing time and having the bullet just leave the muzzle: not an easy task.

  14. Ironclad says:

    Is there any way to get this game on PC without “games for windows live” blasphemy? And don’t say pirate/crack it.

    • GepardenK says:


    • Unaco says:

      Just buy it. There is no Games for Windows LIVE attached to it. Games for Windows and Games for Windows LIVE are 2 different things. Games for Windows LIVE is the DRM/Social/Achievement stuff, and is widely reviled.

      Games for Windows is a set of standard features and compatibilities, and if a game has them, they can use the Games for Windows logo/icon. Things like supporting 64 bit systems, having an Easy Install/Uninstall option, compatibility with the Windows 7 Games Browser, supporting widescreen resolutions. It’s an effort to standardise certain parts for compatibility and general smooth running on Vista/7 and with modern hardware.

      Dishonored only has Games for Windows… so it only has those compatibilities. It doesn’t have Games for Windows LIVE. I think Bethesda seem pretty happy these days to stick with Steamworks for their titles.

  15. WJonathan says:

    Rats + skewers + possesion + explosives + slowtime = a screen full of giblets. I guess I have failed this demo, because I find very little appealing here. Certainly there will be more to the gameplay, but this collage makes the game seem like a series of overpowered cheat codes.

    • Aatch says:

      It has been said that on this very comment board/thing that the players in these videos are basically cheating anyway, what with having infinite mana and all.

      They have done a lot of work to make sure that you don’t have to kill anybody, to the point where you can do sidequests to eliminate targets (the instance I saw was “contracting” a gang to kidnap a pair of corrupt politicians, shave their heads and put them to work in their own mine).

      From what I’ve seen this is a well-thought-out sandboxy world that allows for almost infinite different and effective ways of playing. They state several times that they uncovered combinations they didn’t think of while playtesting and either left them in or tweaked them so they worked a bit better, a good example of this is negating fall damage by possessing somebody mid-fall. They never intended that, but left it in because it was a cool combination. They seem to have gone with a “make a world and let the player work it out” style for world-design, meaning that they didn’t just decide how many ways to do a mission and made that, they just made a semi-realistic setting at made sure it didn’t have any game-breaking features (e.g. the targets being too easy to access)/