Thanks to the new issue of Game Informer, we now have oodles of new information for Ready At Dawn’s brand new IP for Playstation 4, The Order: 1886.
The game has been in concept since 2005, and is set around an alternate history London where humanity splits into two, the different humans evolving with more bestial traits, becoming what they call “half breeds”. The conflict between normal humans and half breeds begins soon afterwards, with humanity forming their own version of the Knights of the Round Table, titled The Order.
Events for The Order quickly change when they discover the substance dubbed “black water”, giving them prolonged lifespans and the ability to quickly recover from their injuries. The Knights of The Order still age, but as previously mentioned, at a much slower rate, allowing them to fight the half-breeds for centuries, becoming masters at the art of combat. The Knights personally feel like their gift is a curse, seeing everything and everyone around them die before they ever will.
The events of the split between humanity and the ongoing war between normal humans, The Order and the half-breeds continue into the 19th century, where you, the player, don the boots and exquisite mustache of Grayson, also known as Sir Galahad. Due to humanity’s new enemy, technology has diverted and been focused in areas different from our current world, giving 19th century London a futuristic but still Industrial Age look. Rebellions come up within human society as citizens are unhappy with their rulers and the inequality between the rich and the poor.
Combat in The Order is chaotic and exciting, featuring a cover system akin to Gears of War. The focus is on third-person gunplay, but the game also draws things back a bit for a more relaxed pace, allowing you time to investigate things and explore the environments. Speaking of the environments, everything in game is rendered with soft body physics, meaning that, yes, The Order: 1886 will feature destructible environments. An example was given with metal beams reacting to magnetic forces, bending and shifting in real time.
Ready at Dawn elaborated on their attention to detail, citing how they have lens flare that catches light as you rotate the camera, oil lamps will flash independently in underground environments, light bounces off every object, and lastly clouds and particles of dust float around lamp flames. They’ve also put a stupid amount of detail into wood, leather and cloth textures. The graphics you saw in the debut trailer are what you can expect the final game to look like:
The developers are looking to put a new spin on Quick Time Elements, the bane of many gamers’ experience when playing games that heavily rely on them. The example given was melee attacks triggering a semi-cutscene, allowing you to rotate the camera around and find environmental hazards or weapons to give you the edge in a brawl. This type of factor can range from dodging punches to grabbing something to improvise as a weapon.
Lots of attention to detail has been given with weapons; in fact, each weapon has been designed to feel unique and have its own quirks and benefits. Traditional laws and principles grounded in modern science have been taken into consideration, but there are also functions of weapons that throw logical thinking out the window, like the Arc Gun, which shoots bolts of lightning. The Arc Gun has two different shooting methods, the first is a non-lethal shot that gives you some breathing room, and a standard dose of carnage via the secondary shot. The Thermite Rifle spews chemicals onto your foes, with its secondary mode of fire shooting out a flare; this can act as a source of light or a way to set your chemically doused enemies on fire.
Ready at Dawn were not willing to talk multiplayer, they are focused on making the single player experience wickedly awesome. The Order: 1886 does not have a solid release date, but from how long this has been in the making, it can’t be that much further out.