Monday, January 17, 2022

New Pokémon Legends: Arceus Gameplay Preview Offers Best Look Yet At What This Game Actually Is

Nintendo and The Pokémon Company have released a new gameplay preview trailer for Pokémon Legends: Arceus and it’s a 13-minute look at what we’ll actually be doing in the game when it launches on January 28.  It offers the best look yet at this new take on the Pokémon formula, which is especially exciting because as of late, Nintendo has been churning out trailer after trailer showcasing essentially the same content. Not to mention, no official public hands-on previews have happened for this game so we don’t even know what playing Arceus feels like. However, today’s gameplay preview video provides some answers to a lot of the questions we had.  Click here to watch embedded media Exploration The trailer doubles down on the open-hub nature of the Hisui region, citing that each biome has different Pokémon to catch, terrain to traverse, and raw materials to gather. These raw materials can be used to craft items such as healing items, lures, smoke bombs, Poké Balls, and more, and the narrator says your Pokémon can help you find these materials too.  Wild Pokémon Different Pokémon appear based on the time of the day and weather conditions. Plus, different species have different temperaments. Some are skittish and might run away. Others are aggressive. If a Pokémon detects you, it will be in an alert state and it will deflect all Poké Balls you throw at it. In order to catch an alert Pokémon, you’ll need to battle it with one of your own.  You can distract Pokémon with things like food, too. Also, if you encounter aggressive Pokémon, they might immediately attack you and if you take too much damage, you’ll blackout and lose some of the items you were carrying.  Pokédex  As part of the Survey Corps, your job is to fill out the Pokédex. This doesn’t just consist of catching Pokémon – that will only get some of the survey report filled out. You’ll need to witness them doing certain moves or observe them at different parts of the day to learn more about the species and ultimately, complete their Pokédex entry.  Traversing The Hisui Region Because of how large the Hisui region is, you’ll have access to special “blessed” Pokémon that you can ride on. For example, you can ride Wyrdeer to navigate land faster, but you can also immediately hop onto the back of a Hisuian Braviary to fly through the skies, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire-style. Basculegion lets you skim through the rivers and seas of the Hisui region, too.  Jubilife Village Jubilife Village is the center of operations for the Galaxy Expeditions Team, which is a group of people who have set up camp in the Hisui region to learn about it and the Pokémon within. They’re made up of the Survey Corps, Security Corps, and Medical Corps. Jubilife is your home base and it’s here you’ll collect tasks and turn in completed ones. You can also purchase crafted items and clothes here, and trade Pokémon with other players here, too.  Missions and Requests Part of the gameplay loop of Arceus is completing missions and requests. The latter are small tasks to help the people of Hisui while the former is how you progress through Arceus’ story. You can use your Arc Phone in a very Sheikah Slate-way to set waypoints, map out the region, and more as well.  Battle As expected, battling in Pokémon Legends: Arceus is turn-based, like the traditional Pokémon games. However, there’s a twist in the form of different move styles. If you use an Agile-Style move, it raises the user’s action speed, which means their next move might happen sooner but the move will be weaker. Strong-Style moves, on the other hand, cause your Pokémon to sit out for a move and in return, hit stronger the next time they attack.  Alpha Pokémon will be tough to battle but easily spotted thanks to their large size and glowing red eyes. Catching them will be tough, but it will be worth it.  Customization You can customize your character with a variety of clothing items at the Clothier in Jubilife Village. As you progress through the journey of Arceus, you’ll unlock more and more items including hairstyles, shirts, pants, and more.  Noble Pokémon Noble Pokémon are special frenzied creatures that rampage across the Hisui region. They’re easy to spot, too, as they glow gold. These are essentially boss battles. Depleting their health won’t end the fight. Instead, you’ll need to throw special balms at them made of their favorite food. In between throwing balms, you’ll need to dodge its attacks to survive. At some point during the fight, the Pokémon will reveal an opening and then you can attack. Now, you have to actually defeat it in battle before you can finally catch it. The narrator promises that these will be some of the toughest battles in the entire game.  And that’s where the video ends. Pokémon Legends: Arceus will hit the Switch on January 28. While waiting for its release, catch up on some of the recently-released trailers, starting with this Pokémon Legends: Arceus trailer that introduces the Diamond and Pearl clans to the game. Watch this trailer for a better look at the environments, NPCs, and Pokémon we’ll be catching after that, and then watch this one for a better look at the crafting in the game.  Are you excited for Pokémon Legends: Arceus? Let us know in the comments below!
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    Prepare for battle with a deeper dive into Godfall’s combat techniques

    The team here at Counterplay Games has been working hard on Godfall to create an experience for players where they can truly embrace an engaging combat experience while fighting with intensity and finesse, as they dominate the battlefield. We want players to put their own fingerprint on the game with how they play. That said, we created a number of ways to approach and defeat the enemies you’ll face in Godfall. Recently, we debuted a combat trailer that showcased a closer look at the Water Realm and some of the challenging enemies you will encounter there. With that trailer, we focused on a couple specific things, one of which is exploiting the Weakpoints in enemies. Weakpoints are one of the many combat features in Godfall that we want to dive deeper into with you today as we break down some of the different combat techniques you’ll have at your disposal when the game launches on PlayStation 5 on November 12. Targeting an enemy’s Weakpoints Valorian knights can use their Valorplates to reveal hit locations of particular vulnerability on their enemies. This allows skilled knights to take advantages of the imperfections and weaknesses of an otherwise daunting foe. An enemy’s Weakpoint will typically reveal itself after they attack, and there are also a few additional unique triggers for Weakpoints that you will find while you play. With Weakpoints, we want to reward players who approach the game with patience and accuracy. Once an enemy’s Weakpoint is revealed, you will need to aim for a direct hit to deal bonus damage. Additionally, there will be loot traits tied to some weapons that will give added benefits to hitting Weakpoints (e.g. healing, detonating elemental explosions, etc.). Breaching an enemy As you fight your way through the World of Aperion, you will come across heavily armored enemies. You will need to breach these enemies in order to do effective damage against them. So how do you breach an enemy? The most effective way is to hit them with a heavy attack (R2) and then follow-up quickly with light attacks (R1). Using Heavy attacks on their own can also be effective. Once you fill up the enemy’s breach bar, the enemy will be stunned and become vulnerable to takedowns. Finish an enemy with a Soulshatter Every Valorian knight learns to affect their opponents’ internal Aetherium – the very fabric of their spirit. As a Valorian strikes their foes, they make small rends in their enemies’ spiritual fabric. Then, at the right tactical moment, a powerful strike is delivered that will turn these fractures into a large internal detonation. When performed correctly, this move will utterly destroy a being. Soulshatter finishes are a fantastic way to dispose of enemies in your path. As you deal damage to an enemy, you accumulate a bank of damage that can be consumed with a heavy attack (R2). If that bank of damage is larger than the enemy’s remaining health, you will soulshatter the enemy. Soulshatters also serve as an additional trigger to traits you may have on individual pieces of loot. As you finish your enemies off with a soulshattering blow, you will see various payoffs as you utilize those triggers. In addition to the already beautiful explosion of your enemy, you may see additional payoffs such as shooting elemental projectiles from the shatter, triggering secondary explosions, and more. Utilize Polarity Attacks to increase your potential As you utilize both your weapons at your disposal, there is a bonus for players who swap their weapons mid-battle. Players can charge up a Polarity Attack by hitting enemies with their weapon. When fully charged, a weapon swap unleashes a shockwave that boosts your weapon’s damage by 20% for 30 seconds. The potential shockwave damage can be increased as you level up specific player attributes. Players who want to maximize their damage completely will find themselves swapping between weapons mid-combat. Similar to Weakpoints and Soulshatter, Polarity Attacks are tied to loot effects. A simple example is increasing the damage for the shockwave or increasing the charge rate. Some examples of exotic loot traits you may find include inflicting an ailment whenever you use your Polarity Attack or applying a debuff on enemies hit by the shockwave. Shields are made for offense Sure, you can use your shield for defense, but it is an equally capable offensive tool. Here are some ways you can utilize your shield to defeat your enemies: Parrying – You can test your reactionary skills in battle by parrying an enemy’s attack (L1). A successful parry right before an enemy attack lands leaves the enemy vulnerable for a short time. Shield Throw – Need to get an enemy out of your way or maybe they’re just too far across the fight from you? Hold L1 to aim your shield, and then throw it at the enemy by pressing R2. Throwing your shield can damage and knock them down. Just remember that your Shield Throw has a short cooldown, so utilize it wisely. Stomach Punch – Up close and personal and just want to knock your enemy on the ground? Once unlocked from your skill grid, players will be able to utilize a Stomach Punch with their shield to knock down enemies. Flat Bash – Once unlocked from the skill grid, players can utilize a Flat Bash that can interrupt an enemy’s Red Power Attacks (non-interruptible attacks), and petrify the ones Breached by it. Petrified enemies will be turned into obsidian that can then be smashed into pieces across the battlefield. Shield Ground Slam – Once unlocked from the Skill Tree, players can perform a Shield Ground Slam to cause area-of-effect damage. This attack will also petrify enemies Breached by it. Petrified enemies will be turned into obsidian and can then be smashed into pieces across the battlefield. Shield Catch Area Blast – Once unlocked, give yourself room to breathe by causing a large Shield Shockwave. Press L1 right as your Shield Throw returns to you to release a blast of energy. Shield Zoom Attack – Want to get up close and personal with your weapon but the enemy is just too far away? Once unlocked, press L1 right as your Shield Throw hits an enemy to dash quickly to their location and start swinging away. Archon Mode Archon Mode is the ultimate showcase of what your Valorplate can do. We want players to discover and try all the archon modes as they play. At a high level, you will fill up your archon bar as you fight enemies around you. Once completely full, press down on both analog sticks (L3+R3) to activate your Archon Mode. Alongside an ability (like summoning three allies to fight alongside of you), you will receive buffs that have triggers attached to them. Trigger those effects to immensely escalate your destruction potential. We can’t wait to see how high players can rachet up their damage output. Weapons in your arsenal In a previous blog post, we shared some of the unique combat features of the Dual Blades and Longsword. We wanted to touch on the final three weapon classes with you today. You saw the Warhammer and Polearm used in the Combat Trailer, but we’re also going to give you a look at the Greatsword in action. Warhammers Because Valorians are frequently outnumbered or outsized on the battlefield, the great Warhammers were developed to take advantage of the strength give to wearers of Valorplate. These heavy-duty weapons the hardest armors and scatter multitudes of smaller enemies with each strike. Wield the Warhammer to inflict slow, but big area-of effect blasts as part of its standard combos. Outside of your normal light and heavy attacks, Warhammers gain charge over time. You can gain charge faster by attacking enemies. When the charge is completely full, you can perform one of your two weapon arts. The first technique is massive energy discharging slam in an area around the player. Your other option is to aim and slam your Warhammer to send a directional shockwave that deals bonus damage at the end of its travel. Polearms The term Polearm, as it applies to Valorians, encompasses a class of weapons with a long reach designed to keep enemies at bay. Because the Valorian martial style is predicated on attack, Polearms are typically used to drive back opponents with their superior area control rather than as weapons meant to receive charges. The Polearm is a fast precision weapon with lots of thrusts and aimed stabs to deal high damage to a single target. Beyond your normal light and heavy attacks, Polearms have a charge bar that charges overtime. When the bar is blue, you can perform one of your two weapon arts. Utilize your first weapon technique to jump quickly forward and perform an area-of-effect slam that deals moderate damage but gets you in the middle of the fight and staggers nearby enemies. Your second technique is a powerful javelin throw. This attack is perfect for a precision strike from distance. Aim it at an enemy’s Weakpoint to inflict massive damage.  Greatswords Like the Warhammers, the Valorian greatswords require the incredible strength granted by your Valorplate to properly wield. Greatswords exist to give knights the striking power of the Warhammer, but the precision of a Longsword. Depending on the weapon, these swords are just as capable of smashing as they are of actually cutting. Your Greatsword has a charge bar that fills whenever you hit or are hit by enemies. The charge gradually empties over time. While the bar is red, you can perform either of the Greatsword’s unique weapon techniques. The first technique at your disposal is one that launches yourself forward in a whirlwinds hitting nearby enemies. The second technique requires more precision as you aim and launch your Greatsword to deal damage to enemies in its path.  We hope you have enjoyed a deeper look into some of the combat features that Godfall has to offer. We can’t wait to see the amazing ways players come up with to dispatch enemies in front of them as they ascend to fight the mad god, Macros. Keep your eyes open as we’ll be sharing even more information with you as we get closer to our launch on November 12.

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