Treating games environments as adventure playgrounds to run, leap, and fall around as we please is always delightful. Parkour games make me a little wistful, though. I remember parkour as being a fundamental part of FPSs, with id Software’s wonderfully wonky movement physics letting folks leap across maps in a few bounds, creating their own routes and popping up in unlikely places. That said, I certainly do welcome more parkour ’em ups.
Caracal Games Studio have announced one of their own, Downward [official site], an open-world explore ’em up set in a wilderness that looks a touch post-Apocalyptic – in the Biblical sense.
Sorry to dump a load of lore on you, but all Caracal have to show for now is words and screenshots, and I do like the sound of this:
“Downward is a landscaping open-world adventure set during the Middle Ages, after that the events depicted in the Book of Revelation of St. John took their course. In the game we will impersonate a mysterious wanderer during its pilgrimage through the Est across the ancient and majestic ruins of the last civilisations of an almost inhabited world. This journey is inspired by the wanderer’s thirst for knowledge, which guides him to search for some strange artefacts, somehow linked to the End already occurred.”
Sadly, I think that “landscaping” means simply that it’s set outdoors rather than e.g. in a city, not that we’ll get to carve cliffs and ravines to transverse. Caracal are based in Italy, so I suspect a language hiccup. Anyway, as well as parkouring all over the place, it’ll have puzzles and things over a game expected to take around ten hours. That’s a lot of leaping.
I really would like to see that leaping in motion, though, as first-person parkour really calls for solid controls, feedback, and representation of the movement.
Caracal plan to release Downward on Windows in winter 2016, and maybe Mac and Linux too. For now, another screenshot of a places I’d quite like to leap around (see the game’s site for more):