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Wowzers: Skyrim + CryEngine = Lichdom

Move over, giant lizard pig monster. You're cluttering up all the pretty.

H… h… h… hey there, Lichdom. Gee, you sure are pretty. Why, you’re basically what Skyrim would’ve been if Bethesda wasn’t still using a 1000-year-old engine. You maybe want to get coffee some– [trips over an inconveniently placed chair, falls out the door, stumbles into a patch of cacti, trips over a hillside, rolls into an errant band of wild boars, loses terribly on an episode of Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader, crawls broken and defeated back to Lichdom’s location] time?

It’s quite a looker, right? Lichdom is powered by CryEngine, so expect graphical oomph in spades. Also regular oomph, if developer Xaviant is to be believed. Basically, Lichdom is about high-octane magical combat first and foremost, which means spells that hit enemy hordes with craterous impact, scattering them like mana-singed bowling pins. Better still, you’ll be custom crafting your spells, so baddies will careen through the air hilariously to your exact specifications.

With the focus on combat, however, comes one rather large compromise – namely, the game’s world isn’t fully open. Xaviant’s claiming it’s “just as immersive” as something like Skyrim, though. The developer elaborated:

“The system driving combat and magic is designed from the ground up to deliver an emergent spell-casting experience in worlds tailored to allow for experimentation and re-playability. The player is trained in the use of these systems through quests tailored to feel seamless with the environment. Hundreds of encounters with the corruption of this world encourage a player to build and test their magic creations. Each new region challenges the player with visceral combat and rewards them with magics of increasingly varied effect.  With skill and creativity these abilities can be combined to create organic synergies that unleash far more devastating destruction.”

Sounds like it could be quite interesting, though I hope there’s more to defense than just flailing your easily severed hands and hoping a spell casts in time. Lichdom will be out in summer 2014. Does it strike your fancy and/or set it ablaze in a hundred horrifying, entirely devastating ways?

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Nathan Grayson

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