Have a whale of a time with...no. These creative kills are whale-y good. Oh no no no.
I understand the appeal of playing a game like Dishonored 2 [official site] without killing a single person, I really do, but Arkane are sorely tempting my no harm, nn foul-festering-bloodfly-feeding-frenzy policy. A new video shows both Emily and Corvo using their supernatural skills to create deftly calculated carnage. There are doppelgangers, body-swaps, blink-kicks that send people flying through the air like footballs, and combinations of time manipulation, razor traps and vertical violence that make a stab to the back seem so simple as to be uncouth.
Maybe I'll try to be as non-violent as possible after all because there is no way I'm going to be able to pull off some of these moves. I'm not even sure I fully understand precisely how the setup works on a couple of them.
One of the many wonderful things about Dishonored is that the tools it gives to the player - and I'm including everything from the weapons and powers to the basics of movement - are multi-purpose. The first game's Blink teleportation can be used for mobility, for stealth, for retreat and for violence. Dishonored 2 looks like it's going to add plenty more tricks and the Domino effect alone looks like it'll open up all kinds of possibilities for pranks. Some of the pranks will be deadly.
The superpowers of the characters are such an unusual aspect of these games. Stealth is often about vulnerability, but if you were to stumble across Emily or Corvo as they scurried through the shadows, you'd probably end up getting hurled to the moon, missing a couple of limbs. The ability to transition from stealth to slaughter and back again ties into the kinetic nature of the games - stealth is often about motionless crouching, then creeping from place to place in an effort to stay concealed. Dishonored's stealth is about movement, whether you're darting between one location and the next while backs are turned, or creating magical chaos to put obstacles and enemies into motion.
I'd love to master all of these skills and be like the Corvo and Emily in the video, but the truth of the matter is, I'll be perfectly happy if I can punt a few guards into the sea. The echoes of Dark Messiah are strong and pleasing.
Dishonored 2 is due on November 11th.