Ashen excited me with just a few seconds of animation in a tweet, back before it even had a name. The new game from developers A44 has been announced with considerably more grandeur via a cinematic (but in-engine) trailer. It's... a lot less exciting for it. But Flintlock: The Siege Of Dawn sounds more interesting in writing: it's an open world action RPG in which you use axes, guns and magic to fight old gods.
Here's the trailer:
I get excited when a trailer shows me something novel to do, but the Flintlock trailer suggests you'll spend a lot of time fighting zombies or skeletons. I also get excited when a trailer shows me somewhere novel, or strange or beautiful, to explore, but the Flintlock trailer makes it look like its set in Smoky Dirtville. None of this is appealing.
There are, in fairness, glimpses within the trailer of more interesting parts of the game. There's your mystical pet/companion, Enki, who we see fighting and transforming alongside the protagonist, Nor Vanek. There's also a glimpse of a much more interesting enemy at the trailer's end, which I guess is one of the Old Gods.
My frustrations with the trailer aside, having made Ashen is reason enough to be excited about A44's next project. Brendan thought it fell slightly short in Dark Souls comparisons in his Ashen review, but otherwise found it a "gorgeous panorama of a game", with satisfying combat and Journey-fied multiplayer. (There's nothing to suggest Flintlock will support any kind of co-op.)
Re-reading Brendan's review, in fact, makes me particularly excited for a new open world from this studio - one that will again encompass crumbling ruins and huge cities. Flintlock: The Siege Of Dawn is due for release in 2022 and you can find some more posed shots on its Steam page.