Bioware’s Shadow Realms look set to jump into the pool with Turtle Rock Studio’s Evolve, both sporting 4v1 online co-op gameplay, but the target audience maybe vastly different.
In the blue corner
Evolve’s First Person Shooter feel will undoubtedly draw on Turtles Rocks experience with the Left 4 Dead franchise and attract those fans, especially with advancements they made in AI with the Director functionality and multiplayer elements playing right into the setup for a 4v1 style of game.
The Evolve setting is based a group of hunters, which when I originally heard about it sounded a little boring but it turns out the setting is a distant planet where colonists come under attack by alien forces. The group of players will have to take down the Monster, while navigating the less than friendly environment.
The roles of the players will be assault, trapper, support and medic classes, each with unique abilities they bring to the table, below is a long playthrough but within the first 10 minutes you have a feel for the game and how it mechanics slot together especially for the hunters, each with a key role to perform.
And in the red corner
The Shadow Realms setting looks to be modern linked with a parallel world and just a hint of conspiracy thrown in for good measure (reminded me instantly of Dreamfall). It has a feel like a traditional RPG with a 3rd person perspective and looks to be going down a fairly magic heavy route compared the Scifi themed Evolve. Additionally it looks to be offering episodic content that leans more heavily on story than raw gameplay.
The fantasy setting comings more apparent when you look at the classes in the game Assassin, Warlock, Warrior, Cleric, Wizard and Ranger. Another nod comes from the fact the ShadowLord acts like a dungeon master to a certain degree, selecting traps and altering the environment to hinder the co-op players.
If I’m honest watching the video below got me thinking of a modern retake of Gauntlet, which isn’t entirely a bad thing.