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Stealth And Stakes: Ten Minutes Of Slayer Shock

Procedural Buffy sim

Slayer Shock [official site] is the recently announced first-person Buffy-like vampire-killing game from David Pittman, creator of Eldritch and Neon Struct. The game has now landed on Steam Greenlight, with a ten minute walkthrough video showing a couple of missions as well as the coffee shop hub where mission planning and research takes place. It looks more in-depth than I'd expected, with team mates to recruit/rescue, equipment to buy or flog, and a TV series structure that procedurally generates missions and 'Big Bads' to hunt and slay.

I'd be paying attention to whatever Pittman did next - his first two solo games were magnificent lo-fi explorations of the Looking Glass legacy, combining stealth and trickery with evocative settings. I'm not quite sold on Slayer Shock's suburbs yet, which seem to be caught somewhere between convincing spaces and atmospheric gloom. That might work but hopefully there'll be slightly more character in the individual areas come the finished game.

All the rest though, the sneaking and the slaying and the episodic structure? I want it now. There's some info on how the seasons will work in the video, which explains how you can research the identity of the 'big bad' - Buffy slang for the boss - and can then expect him/her/it to show up during regular missions as you build toward a confrontation. Here's the Greenlight page's summary:

Operating from your headquarters at a college coffee shop, you take missions to patrol the streets, rescue captive humans, and weaken the undead threat. A team of fellow vampire slayers assists you from HQ, providing new weapons, skills, and research.

With a format that lovingly recalls scripted television (missions are "episodes", each campaign is a "season"), Slayer Shock blends immersive first-person action, lightweight strategy, and procedural narrative into a uniquely thrilling experience.

Visit the page to vote for the game on Greenlight and you can follow development right here. It's obviously too early to be thinking about the next game but I'd like to see Pittman apply some of these ideas to a Star Trek kinda thing.

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Adam Smith


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