"We Didn't Do A Good Job" Of Explaining It
Ryse: Son Of Rome managed to raise a few eyebrows during Microsoft's E3 press conference, but for all the wrong reasons. Its gameplay demo resembled a QTE-laden derivative slog, but Crytek reckons that the finished article will be much more nuanced and complex.
Crytek producer Michael Read told Siliconera that the E3 demo "didn't do a good job" of explaining the depth behind Ryse's combat mechanics.
“What you’re going to see in the final game, you’re going to see various levels of difficulty from easy mode I think up to nightmare," he said. "I don’t know if they have decided on that. But, what’s going to change in there is the amount of the damage that enemies is going to do to you and how accurate that you are going to do on blocking. And then of course what ties into that is execution state when you put them into that. Some of the higher archetype guys, I mean they are going to take a lot of hits to put it.
“We are going to throw some stupid guys in there, where it’s probably going to take two hits, especially early on in the game to get you used to the control system and how that all works. There’s a lot we should have explained. We didn’t do a good job of doing that.”
Countering claims that Ryse is overly dependent on quick time events, Read suggested that the experience had to be toned down to make for a slick stage presentation - and there's more depth than we might realise.
“A lot of the design elements and balancing weren’t even in there yet," he continued. "So, to throw those in and here to play the game, I mean, it makes for an awful experience. But I think at the same time, we simplified things a little bit too much but we didn’t do a good job in explaining the combat.
“Right now, you play the demo you have X is your hit, Y is your shield bash, A is your block, B will lead you into execution mode. [Pointing to the left triggers] So that’s for your call-outs. This will be like your focus. This [right trigger] is to throw out your pilums.
“There are other functions in the general combat you’re going to get into. Pressing X will do your standard swing. Holding X down will do a heavier attack or heavy shield bash, for instance, with the other buttons. You also have shield bash and kick or block and kick.
“When you enter into an execution state, we are going to remove the button prompts that you saw in this version. And they are going to be replaced with visual and audio prompts that people are going to have to learn over time. We have like a hundred executions in the game.”
We were utterly underwhelmed by Ryse's gameplay debut, but hopefully the finished product will provide more than a grim button-mashing trawl. The proof will be in the pudding. Or should that be pilum?