Styx: Shards Of Darkness is set for release on the 14th of March for the Xbox One, PS4 and PC. The game is being developed by Cyanide and will be published by Focus Home Interactive and will run on the Unreal 4 Engine. It is of course the sequel to the 2014 hit Goblin sneak em up Styx: Masters Of Shadows. Cyanide's latest title was first announced back in 2015 and the developer stated then that they had a bigger budget to work with thanks to the success of the first game.
Like Masters Of Darkness, the gameplay in the latest Styx will rely heavily on stealth. You will once again be able to clone yourself to fool guards as well as being able to teleport to your clone if you choose the right upgrade path. Traps can be set, such as vomiting into the guards food or drink to poison them, you also have the ability to turn invisible for a time and you can climb many of the games structures or use a grappling hook to navigate the levels.
As with most stealth games, learning the movement of the guards is key so you know when to strike and where to dispose of the bodies afterwards. But unlike a lot of the bigger stealth em ups out there, you won't spend a lot of time standing still and observing the routine paths that the NPCs take. The beauty of Styx is that you are nearly always on the go. The levels encourage you to explore them, to get used to the layouts so that you can fully use them to their max potential.The game wants you to have fun while you explore the elven city of Koranger in your quest to find why the dark elves and the dwarves have formed an alliance.
As you progress through the story you will have to make choices regarding how you upgrade your character. Will you opt for the ability to turn invisible from time to time or maybe upgrade your clone to further confuse guards. You will not be able to upgrade all of Styx's abilities in a single play through so there will be a lot of room to replay the adventure and do things a different way than before.
The most exciting gameplay feature that Shards Of Darkness has of over its predecessor is co-op. At any time during your adventure you can call on the help of a friend. Having two players makes taking out the guards that bit easier but also increases the chance of one of you been caught or spotted. Many folks out there might only ever play this in single player but hopefully Cyanide has designed the levels to fully utilise the potential of co-op play.
Styx: The Masters Of Shadows was a decent game, it did a lot right but at the same time it felt a little basic, a little to simplistic in places, the promise of co-op and also the Unreal engine might spruce things up some what but with nearly all stealth games, level design will make or break it. If Cyanide add a little more polish and a bit more debt, then this could be a cracking game come the 14th the of the month.
Did you play the original, are you going to give this a blast, please leave any goblin thoughts you may have in the comments below.
Video By Focus Home Interactive
Image From Machinima Trailer Vault/youtube