Lords Of The Fallen Is Dark Souls Meets Borderlands…

There is scant information about there about Lords Of The Fallen, even though it was first announced (as Project RPG) a year ago. The game from The Deck 13, headed by former CD Projekt Red dev Tomasz Gop, doesn’t have a website, nor even an entry in secret industry tome Gamespress. Yet the game that people seem to be pitching as a rival to The Witcher 3 has managed to produce some screenshots despite it all.

Gop was the producer on The Witcher 2, hence the implied rivalry. Developed for the last two years with City Interactive, it’s to be an epic RPG that certainly seems to share a visual flair with Geralt’s boobalicious adventures. However, OXM are reporting that it’s supposed to be closer to a combination of Dark Souls and Borderlands. Huh. It was originally intended to be released this year, but is now certainly somewhere in 2014 and set for PC and the next gen consoles.

Previous snippets revealed about the game tell us that it’s set in the usual medieval fantasy world that games are set in, this one ruled by a Fallen God. There are hints that it may lean toward action RPG, and strong suggestions that battling demons and big supernatural beasties will feature heavily. As VG247 reported a few days ago, the lead baldy-head character is called Harkyn, and should be fairly moldable to the player’s whims. Said Hop,

“Harkyn is not your ordinary hero. Our team is committed to creating a distinct character and a gameplay experience unique to every player, as well as a deep, secretive history that players will be rewarded for upon discovering.”

More details should hopefully appear this week. In the meantime, enjoy these screenshots. They get bigger when you click on them:


  1. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    CD Projekt Red dev Tomasz Gop? Ia! Ia! Cthulhu fhtagn!

  2. 2helix4u says:

    I guess bald brunette male protagonist is slightly more original than brunette male protagonist.

    Who doesn’t want to play as stone cold Steve Austin anyway?

    • lowprices says:

      I… I think I would have to buy that game. Is there a Kickstarter?

    • Bhazor says:

      Oh my god. Wrestlers in action games, why isn’t this a thing?

      • Droopy The Dog says:

        Because someone made Macho Man Randy Savage dragons for Skyrim and everyone got scarred for life.

      • Jason Moyer says:

        I would be completely onboard with a 4-player co-op action RPG where the classes were Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Ultimate Warrior, and Andre The Giant.

        • jonahcutter says:

          All in their early 80’s outfits.

          Oh man, that does sound like it could be ridiculously fun.

    • belgand says:

      But not as original as bald female protagonist. They could really try to shake things up a bit here.

  3. Brun says:

    Dark Souls and Borderlands? That’s one hell of a combination.

  4. darkChozo says:

    So, I assume that this is just Dark Souls except enemies drop cel-shaded guns, then?

    More seriously, I’m not sure if I can think of much that Borderlands has that Dark Souls doesn’t aside from silly stuff like guns and stylistic differences. Procedurally generated loot, I guess?

    • BTAxis says:

      Actual real controls, maybe.

    • F3ck says:

      Gameplay that doesn’t necessarily make one want to don a pair of steel-toes and stomp a children’s petting zoo into a fine red mist.

      • darkChozo says:

        Oh, come now, Borderlands isn’t that bad.

        </countersnark that doesn’t properly reflect my opinion on anything>

        • F3ck says:

          Any game that wasn’t DS, released in the state that game was, would have been followed immediately by torches and pitchforks…but because so many begged for it, I suppose they felt it was a gift horse and instead lynched anyone who dared to point out the emperor was nude (and had shit controls & lousy graphics).

          BL2 is no tale for the ages, but it has some phenomenal game design plays like greased up perfection.

          • killias2 says:

            I liked both games. I was a fan of Demon’s Souls on the PS3 before Dark Souls, so I was very excited to see DkS hit the PC. I understand people’s issues with it. However, having put 90 hours into the PC edition (vs. 27 for Borderlands 2), I really can’t complain. I LOVE that %@#^ing game!

          • darkChozo says:

            I see that my big honking disclaimer wasn’t enough to indicate that I was being a bit facetious?

            More seriously, DaS PC is a bit of a weird one. On one hand, it’s pretty objectively a terrible PC port. On the other hand, it was semi-budget priced, the dev was very open about the fact that it probably wouldn’t be amazing, and it most of the issues were fixed with mods within a week of release. It’s also a game that a lot of people reaaally like, and as such they’re probably willing to forgive lots of issues if it means being able to play the game.

            (Disclaimer: I’m probably biased; I played both DeS and DaS to completion on a friend’s PS3 for the price of free, so DaS could have been a $40 screensaver and I would’ve been fine with where my money went. I also would’ve played DaS PC with a controller even if it had had decent M&K controls.)

          • Lamb Chop says:

            I have a couple of major gripes with Dark Souls: if you’re creating an intentionally brutal game, it needs to have the feeling that it’s the gameplay itself that is challenging; execution, tactics, and character development/itemization should be the critically important factors in your performance. Unfortunately, as mentioned the UI and character control are left clunky in the PC Port, and the game itself does very little to explain the mechanics of the game. For example, I scoured every in game resource before really beginning, and there are no indications what kind of import decisions like what you spend your souls on will have. That’s okay, if it’s the run-of-the-mill action game (maybe I don’t care about souls and just want to stab things), but Dark Souls is catering to a crowd that wants to be able to plan strategically for a finely tuned challenge. I don’t want your tutorial to tell me what to do, I want your interface to tell me what things do. Otherwise it actually decreases my engagement with the game systems.

            The combat has a similar problem…the parry animation gives almost no sense of the effective window. By all means kill me if I mis-time it, but don’t make me spend 10 deaths just figuring out when something is parried. This kind of looseness actually actively inhibits the learning necessary to take down new enemy types as it adds uncertainty and repetition (did I not parry because this attack is unparryable or did I not parry because it hit just outside the effective window in the animation?). Basically, Dark Souls is a great game with a communication problem.

          • darkChozo says:

            I assume you’re talking about stats on the first point? I’m split on that. On one hand, it would probably be good for them to properly explain what the stats actually do, at least to a basic degree (though once you figure out scaling you can probably guess at 90% of what you’re gonna get from each stat). On the other hand, the mysteriousness actually results in a pretty interesting communal effort to figure out what’s going on, and is pretty congruent with, say, how the plot is laid out. I still remember when DaS was released when everyone was trying to figure out what in the hell Poise did – took people a good few months to semi-formalize it.

            On the second point, I don’t think I agree. Parrying is entirely a matter of timing, once you know that it exists there’s nothing to it beyond practice, and the tutorial area gives you the chance if you’re willing to learn it. I suppose the uncertainty of what is and is not parriable exists, but I don’t recall having much trouble on my first playthrough; parriable enemies are pretty obvious in most instances (is it a human or near-human-sized enemy with a weapon?), and if you parry an unparriable enemy with proper timing, you’ll actually receive less damage, so it’s not a dealbreaker assuming you have the timing down.

          • i saw dasein says:

            Actually, the controls in Dark Souls are best in class, and the quality of the art design more than makes up for any deficiencies in the graphic engine itself. That’s a fact.

          • F3ck says:

            I know you were sort of pokin’ fun…and my reply wasn’t meant to be that defensive.

            It’s just that of the many, many games I played/purchased last year none disappointed me quite so much as DaS.

            I had seen it played on PS3 and was intrigued to say the least, so was rather excited when it came to our platform. But even after all the mods, fixes, tweaks and remaps (on my quad-core @ 3.8ghz/7870) it was still myopic and frustratingly sluggish.

            I was looking forward to getting my ass kicked ingame, just wasn’t expecting it to be the configs that did it.

    • Grey Poupon says:

      I was kind of hoping it’d be a first person Dark Souls with procedurally generated loot. But then again, I guess it’s more likely they chose two blockbuster hits that remotely resemble their game than that the game is actually a hybrid of those two.

      • aliksy says:

        Posted below also, but I feel strongly enough about this that I’ll post twice:
        Randomly generated loot would be a horrible thing for dark souls.

        • Niko says:

          Indeed. One of the outstanding things about Dark Souls is that minimalistic approach to design.

  5. golem09 says:

    It does look good, but why does it have to pick up that cartoonish mmorpg design, where everything is huge and some designer never stopped drawing more and more things on the armor?

    • Droopy The Dog says:

      I sometimes wonder if it’s a semi-practical consideration for games with a large number of unique armours. As in it’s easier to design hundreds of unique outfits when there’s two dozen pointless tassel-y bits to swap around and remove.

      • lofaszjoska says:

        Still, why do they have to be so Goddamn big? Nothing puts me off as quickly as cartoony over-designed gear.

  6. antoniodamala says:

    “Harkyn is not your ordinary hero.” *looks at the picture of the bald hero that looks just like any bald hero ever* Don’t think so.

  7. hap says:

    Those are actual in-game screenshots? Beautiful game if so, it looks more like hand-painted concept art.

  8. Canisa says:

    “Should be fairly moldable to the player’s whims.” But can’t be made female?

    “Harkyn is not your ordinary hero.” Except he’s a white man who fights people, so he is.

    “Our team is committed to creating a distinct character and a gameplay experience unique to every player.” Unless the player isn’t a white man, of course.

    • Dunbine says:

      As a white man who fights people, I resent that. I’m an extraordinary hero.

    • Fred S. says:

      Because all white men are identical.

      • Canisa says:

        Honestly, there are so many white men all over the place in video games now, the distinctions between them aren’t worth paying attention to, and so they are essentially identical.

      • Arkh says:

        I demand all games to be politically correct and feature males, females, black people, asians, and every ethnie around the world as a playable character. Otherwise it’s just white male garbage trash.

        You should feel bad Frodo is male. That misogynist Tolkien, there aren’t sufficient women in his work. I demand every work out there to suit my tastes. Fuck you creative control, if the authors doesn’t feature X, he is [insert ethnic/feminist insult here] and should feel bad about it.

        • tobecooper says:

          If creative control means putting white males as main heroes into every game, then I have my doubts about it being ‘creative.’

          • Arkh says:

            Ratonhnhaké:ton and Matthew “Coops” Cooper says “hi”.

            Oh no, but no game can have white males otherwise it’s not creative. I hate Deus Ex man, it was so full of white males. Torment was the same thing. So much garbage, lack of creativity and racism etcetera.

          • Fred S. says:

            Well, you could always mod in some alternative ethnic character models and skins. About a dozen different character models and an equal number of skins ought to do it. Let us know when you get them ready.

            edit: Don’t forget to include voice acting as appropriate.

          • Canisa says:

            Remember when Adam Jensen was a man, and the art director said that they wanted him to be a woman, but Eve Jensen would have to be beautiful, and they didn’t want a beautiful protagonist?

            Remember when Deus Ex was so uncreative it couldn’t even conceive of ugly women doing interesting things.

          • tobecooper says:

            What’s up with throwing Deus Ex around like it was some golden standard? It isn’t RPG. Besides, we must have played a different Deus Ex, because in the one I played you could choose the color of the skin of JC, and changing gender wasn’t implemented because they didn’t manage to do that in time for release.

            Having a choice is a nice thing. I want it, whatever you say.

          • Arkh says:

            But he is clearly white in the cover! PREPOSTEROUS, A GAME WHERE THE PORTAGONIST IS A WHITE MALE!
            link to upload.wikimedia.org

            Also, it is a RPG.

          • tobecooper says:

            He’s totes blue.

          • cowardly says:

            Also, given the “Remember Me” situation, “control” might not be that existent either.

        • Canisa says:

          You’re exactly correct, and I agree with everything you’ve said. I’m not gonna give you a cookie for it though.

    • Bhazor says:

      Most importantly he’s a hero “with a troubled past”. Woah steady on guys, this is too out there.

    • machineageproductions says:

      Let’s be fair. If it’s anything like Borderlands, this is probably just one character’s art. There may be an 80 pound, giant breasted, midriff showing master of waif-fu that flirts with her enemies to play as well.

      • Canisa says:

        From what it looks like so far, there’s only one protagonist and it’s this guy.

        Both Borderlands *and* Dark Souls let you play as a woman, but this game doesn’t. For me, that means it’s lacking the most important feature of both of those games.

        • Niko says:

          Dark Souls allows you to play as a woman who doesn’t look like a woman (if you put full armor on).

          • darkChozo says:

            I recently started a run where I’ve refused to use anything that hides my character’s oh-so-pretty hair (it’s a she, if it’s relevant). I’m to Sen’s Fortress and my only choice of headgear thus far is the Thief’s Mask that I started with.

        • Fanbuoy says:

          The possibility of playing as either gender is the most important feature? Fair enough, I suppose, but I’m more of a gameplay kind of guy.

        • elmo.dudd says:

          That is the most important feature? So if Borderlands 2 had a character named Michael with an ability to perform phaselocks, quickly revive friends, deal additional elemental damage, and heal teammates – the game would be a fundamental failure?

    • John Walker says:

      There’s so little info about this one so far that I think it’s a little early to judge. But yes, he does look woefully typical so far.

    • Arkh says:

      ..and blocked!

    • hjparcins says:

      Well, the lead designer appears to be Polish. I’m sure you would be sufficiently offended if he decided the protagonist should be an black dude and, with his likely limited experience with black dudes (being from Poland and all), accidentally resorted to a cliche or two in characterizing said protagonist.

      Also looks like Deck 13 is a German studio. Man, wouldn’t you just like, have an aneurysm or something if the protagonist was a white guy with blonde hair and blue eyes? The NERVE!

      Seriously though, chill out. If you want a transgender Polynesian protagonist with heterochromia and a wine stain facial birthmark so bad, make your own damn game. If it’s good, people will buy it.

      • Arkh says:

        If it doesn’t feature homosexual romance options and marriage I will not buy the game. Every game needs that. EVERY GAME.
        Otherwise it’s just white racist misogynist shit.

        • Nick says:

          ..and blocked!

          • derbefrier says:

            You showed him! Don’t like an opinion? why block it and pretend it doesn’t exist!!! That way you don’t even have to think about what he said or the implications of it.!!!! This is what we should do with all people who disagree with the almighty god that is political correctness!!!

            (plugs fingers in ears”)nananananana I caaaaannnttt heeaaarr you!!!”

          • cowardly says:

            You do realise he was making a snarky (and justifiably so) joke about a comment the same person he is referring to made just a touch higher up?

      • Canisa says:

        Wait, wait, wait. Hold the phone. Are you seriously trying to strawman me by saying that “OH, WOW, I BET RACIAL STEREOTYPES UPSET YOU OR SOMETHING!” Yeah, uh, why is it so shocking that might be the case?

        Also, the gap between ‘white man’ and ‘transgender Polynesian with heterochromia and a facial birthmark’ is really huge. Though I would certainly be interested in seeing the kind of story that a game with a protagonist like that could tell. It’d definitely be a lot more engaging than “RAAAAAH, I MUST KILL *ALL* THE MEN AND FUCK *ALL* THE WOMEN!”, I give you that.

        • apocraphyn says:

          Oh, don’t go stereotyping those bald, white, bearded protagonists. Besides, when was the last time we last saw a bald, bearded protagonist? Kratos? Please. He’s hardly a man. We need more beards on our protagonists – especially the men. Don’t you be getting all beardist on me now, missy.

          In addition to this, you shouldn’t be put off by games solely because of the fixed gender of the main character. Play games for what they are – games – rather than for the main character. Would you adamantly refuse to read a book that features a male character as the central protagonist since you wouldn’t be able to relate to him? I understand the point of view – given the chance to create my own character, I’ll play as a man – but I won’t whinge if I have to jump around as Lara, Faith, Lightning or whoever.

          This is just complaining for the sake of complaining. (And all those of you who keep saying “blocked!” to people ought to be banned from the site, you’re an embarrassment. Keep your foolishness to yourselves).

          • Arkh says:

            What? Are you being moderate about this? Are you telling me there is place in games for an author to give you his character as he envisioned, like Geralt, Faith or Nico, and there are places where we change our character to our tastes, like Saints Row, Fallout and Mass Effect?
            Preposterous! We can’t have both! If games aren’t politically correct, they are not worth!

            Complaining for the sake of complaining is what’s happening here for the past few months. There seems there’s no more space for an author’s vision if it isn’t politically correct.

            And yes, I know it’s foolish, but it’s a good thing to ignore those who are just kicking a fuss about nothing. Like the guy complaining the protagonist is not (insert your preference here) or that (X is so overdone in this misogynist racist industry). I’m even trying to control myself to not reply anymore! In the future, I may be able to ignore these complaining for the sake of complaining entirely and stop being useless about it. I know I’m bad as these guys.

          • Greggh says:

            apocraphyn and Arkh: thanks for stating almost exactly what goes in my mind when I see a thread of conversation like this one… If I were to write it down right now (which I was most inclined to do), I’d probably miss something important like my classes, for which I’m running late as I type…

            So, yeah, canisa, that’s a completely valid point that you raised (especially the first two lines), but you inittially dealt with it too simplistically, “calling wolf” or something, too soon. Don’t take this the wrong way, but without balance, your speech just sounds silly and lacking the appropriate depth for the issue you’re trying (as far I can perceive) to deal/bring to the table here.

    • Shieldmaiden says:

      There is nothing wrong with a developer choosing to give their game a white, male protagonist. However when a disproportionate number of games feature cookie-cutter white, male protagonists, it suggests that something’s wrong. I don’t believe that most developers are bigots, but I do believe that it’s because of the dominance of that demographic within the industry and a woeful lack of creativity.

      Let’s face it, most action game protagonists are utterly forgettable and interchangeable. In an ideal world, all of those games had customisable characters, but that is beyond the resources of many developers. It’d just be nice if they didn’t immediately go to Standard Action Hero Mk 1 every time.

  9. F3ck says:

    My least favorite PC purchase last year combined with the most satisfying game for my dollar…not sure if I like the sound of that…

    Some might think it balances out, but any percentage of dog shit will ruin a cake…god knows I’ve tried.

    edit: don’t get me wrong – I’ll buy it…I mean, it is a PC game…I had to own all of the others.

  10. Totally heterosexual says:

    One thing they should have taken from dark souls is the character design. The armor they are wearing here looks retarded.

  11. Lobotomist says:

    Tomasz Gop left CDP Red because their were not willing to compromise enough.

    Just kidding. But I fully expect that this game will be at least good as Witcher series , but with more uncompromising combat.

    Can not wait.

  12. Zenicetus says:

    Generic medieval fantasy setting with added spiky bits. Not exactly a turn-on for me, although I suppose it’s a plus if there are no Elves and no Dragons.

    Need more info.

  13. RedViv says:

    Visually intriguing. We rarely get comic-sized armours and a somewhat realistic colour palette and shading in the same game.

  14. Peon says:

    Those artists have definitely checked their Warhammer material out. Those pics scream Chaos(TM).

  15. aliksy says:

    One of the strongest parts of Dark Souls was that the items were [i]not[/i] randomly generated. Most weapons have their place, with their own strengths and weaknesses. There’s very little of the traditional “use this weapon for an hour, then swap it out for one that does 1d6 more damage… then drop that for a slightly bigger one.. then another slightly bigger one.. then one that’s on fire..”

    The first time I played Dark Souls I didn’t find the first merchant, but something dropped a long sword early on. I used that weapon the whole way through, and it was fine (May have grown slightly emotionally attached to it). Can you imagine trying to use the same gun for all of Borderlands?

    • Brun says:

      I get that you hate anything that remotely resembles a gear treadmill, but you have to realize that you’re very much in the minority. There’s a reason that games like D.iablo (which is basically nothing BUT gear treadmill) sell well – a lot of people find it fun when a sweet new weapon drops and your enemies explode that much harder. Sure it’s mindless fun but it’s still fun, and it’s fun for lots of people. Obviously a game like this would make it less mindless (the combat would be challenging and not a spam+kitefest).

    • Shooop says:

      Once you get the rarest guns in Borderlands you don’t use anything else except maybe switching to different elemental weapons for different enemies.

  16. aliksy says:

    Also borderlands style explicit quests would be shit in Dark Souls.

    I have no idea what part of borderlands they’re thinking of combining.

  17. MarcP says:

    All this Borderlands, Dark Souls, and white men are the devil talk, and nobody looks at the main issue: this is developed by City Interactive. Their entire game catalogue consists of mediocre clones, developed on low budgets, putting just enough effort to maximise profit, and not a single drop more.

  18. bigjig says:

    I wish they’d learn how to do armour, weapon and monster design from Dark Souls. The art style looks terrible :(

    • dE says:

      Aye, siwmae.
      Part of the reason the armor and weapons in Dark Souls works so well, is because a lot of it is based upon actual armor and weapons, even the more outlandish pieces like Domhnall’s Helmet. /link removed, for some reason it leads to a dead end today

      I wish there was a place that gathered all of the inspirations. I know they said a lot of it was from Berserk but there are some clear other inspirations as well.

      • bigjig says:

        If you haven’t read it already, there’s a really good interview with the design team that goes into a bit of detail on their real world influences. How Anor Londo was influenced by the massive cathedral in Milan, how New Londo Ruins was based off of Mont Saint Michel, that kind of thing.

        Part 1:
        link to giantbomb.com

        Part 2:
        link to giantbomb.com

      • Bork Titflopsen says:

        Even though I think it’s ugly as hell, that is some impressive metalwork. FROM certainly had the right idea designing armor that looks like you could actually fight in it, for the most part.

  19. Shooop says:

    “Dark Souls meets Borderlands”

    You had my curiosity.

    “…headed by former CD Projekt Red dev Tomasz Gop”

    Now you have my attention.

  20. paddymaxson says:

    By dark souls and borderlands do they mean dark souls but coop? Because I’d quite like that, yes it hurts the tension a wee bit but I enjoy dark souls for it’s mechanics, bot it’s scariness, because it has none.

  21. strangeloup says:

    Is it just me, or is “There is a map of the bad things I’ve done” kind of an amusing tagline?

    I’m picturing an A-Z with notes in biro of such things as “kicked a puppy”, “shoplifted”, “crafty wank”, etc.

  22. SMGreer says:

    Surprising that it came from ex-Witcher devs given how generic it looks. Since when did Warhammer’s over-design become a staple for fantasy videogames?

    After The Witcher 2 and Dark Souls, this looks disappointing in the visual department despite a pretty looking game engine.

  23. Blob says:

    I am very excited about this game  I can’t wait to play this.  Screen looks incredible, not to mention about the trailer.
    For me numero UNO ;P

  24. Cortes says:

    i’d love RPG games so I can’t miss this one:) @Blob you have a right screens look amazing. But what do u think about three class in game? Whitch you prefer?

  25. Blob says:

    I’m not really a fan of RPG but this game is different :D I can’t explain this. I like it that you will be able to choose characters, it gives a lot of possibilities….I’d choose the warrior but assassin also sounds good:D

  26. Blob says:

    I recently saw the gameplay. Have you seen?? Combat looks great, graphics looks amazing :D

  27. Cortes says:

    @Blob: Yes I saw LotF gameplay. If this is a pre-alpha show I can’t imagine how it’s looks when developers finish game:D I agree with you in your opinion about combat style and graphics:) But I’a a little disappointed because we don’t see all three class in this gameplay. Can’t wait for it.

    • Blob says:

      Maybe we will see the rest in the next gameplay…or may leave us in ignorance, bigger surprise will be how they look in the game:D will see what C.I. do…

      • Cortes says:

        Honestly? I don’t know myself what I want from CI:D Next gameplay with show all classes or have surprise in release date:P You gave got me thinking about this.

  28. Blob says:

    And silence, perhaps before the storm, and will surprise us with something not expected.

  29. Cortes says:

    I hope you have a right and this silence is before stoorm:D I looking for another information about this game and on other forums or on youtube people still talking about Lords of the Fallen. And I can tell you its very interesting discussions.