Whatever initially pulled you in to strike up interest in “The Order: 1886” (developed by Ready at Dawn and SCE Santa Monica Studio), whether it be the game’s decidedly steampunk stylings or the overall intrigue of the title’s plot, it cannot be denied that this is a highly interesting new IP. Simply put, there really aren’t that many companies making games which delve into the same sort of territory which this game is set to explore. You basically have a story-driven narrative which is displayed in a linear fashion utilizing third-person shooting mechanics. Certainly this is nothing new, but in the context of this we find classic tropes blending with modern concepts, both in terms of the game’s overall atmosphere and design as well as its gameplay. In other words, it seems to be a hodge-podge of various ideas which have been artfully sewn together to create a truly unique experience that’s at once familiar as well as foreign. Having said that – here are 10 awesome things you’ll be able to do in “The Order: 1886”…
Explore an alternate timeline / historical version of London
Quite simply, this isn’t the jolly old London of the 1800’s circa our historical timeline, but rather one in which a specialized order of knights who draw power from both mystical sources as well as through advanced technology, fight off half-breed monsters who are terrorizing the city. At the same time, London itself retains its basic historical look and feel (compared with our timeline / history), so there’s a very interesting sort of dichotomy here which creates an extremely intriguing atmosphere indeed.
Fight crazy-looking werewolf-like creatures
No video game is complete without some baddies to blast and The Order: 1886 doesn’t mess about with weak, anemic enemies that offer little challenge. Instead, if gives us bizarre half-human / half-werewolf-like creatures who are needless to say, somewhat terrifying to encounter. So, while the game is sucking you in with its excellent character roster or highly developed storyline, it’s also unnerving you with seemingly random attacks from bizarre creatures……awesome, right?
Immerse yourself in a “dirty” atmosphere
Pulling quotes directly from Ready at Dawn co-founder Ru Weerasuriya, “We thrive in the dirt. We just love the fact that it feels dirty. It’s filmed in a very realistic way.” In other words, this is a game that’s meant to plunge you into a very almost rancid-like atmosphere which only helps to further immerse you in the game’s mechanics and style. After a while you’ll begin to feel like you’re really there, covered in mud, sweat, dust and of course, werewolf fluids.
Check out some new gameplay concepts that the devs have been working on
When a development team starts to work on a new IP the basic understanding is that some new concepts are likely to be explored with regards to gameplay. Naturally, The Order: 1886 is no different…its’ devs have hinted at a number of very intriguing additions which will take basic gameplay in exciting new directions (although to date we have no idea what they are, specifically).
Use all sorts of weird and wonderful weapons
While a lot of the promotional materials seem to hint that the weapons used in game are “futuristic”, they’re actually based on concepts and technologies which apparently were mostly available during the Victorian era. However, they’re obviously being utilized in non-standard ways and of course there are definitely some curve balls being thrown at us here – no question about that. Standout examples include the “Thermite rifle” and “Arc Gun”.
Enhanced, cinematic melee combat
No doubt, weapons will play the major role in terms of combat for this game, but ample attention has also been paid to melee as well. In short, where other games sort of offer a compromise in terms of melee mechanics and cinematics, 1886 will add another layer of visual spectacle to the mix here, offering multiple pathways in terms of action vs. reaction. In the end you’ll be left feeling like you’re watching an interactive movie, we’re guessing.
Use interesting gadgets
Perhaps adding a bit of Sherlock-like James Bond influence, gadgets will also be prominently featured in The Order: 1886. Whether you’re using your monocular to scout out fighting and action or some other devices, the general idea is that you’ll have various tools at your disposal to aid you in various strategic ways.
Utilize the DualShock 4 controller in a fresh manner
While it’s unclear just how much experimentation the devs have done with the DS4 controller, to date they have mentioned implementing at least one segment where you use the touchpad to “tap out” some Morse coded messages. At the very least, it’s refreshing to see some game makers experimenting with the PS4 controller’s enhanced capabilities.
Did we mention that combat was intense?
Whereas a lot of games promise intense, bone shatteringly crazy combat and anxiety-inducing action yet fail to deliver on it, The Order: 1886 seems poised to actually provide the sorts of thrills and chills that conventional gamers are after in a third-person action / adventure experience. Not only is the overall atmosphere incredibly alluring (or threatening, depending on how you look at it) but it also seems as if it can be somewhat unforgiving as well, forcing you to improve your overall approach to each situation.
Bask in the game’s enhanced cover system
When it comes to cover systems there are loads of different, very specific examples to turn to which more or less detail the various ways you can engage groups or single enemies. In TO: 4886 however, the developers have already stated that their goal is to add even more nuances to the mix, so that there are various levels of cover. In other words, the idea was to create more of a seamless combat experience which looks and feels more intricate and balanced as opposed to inordinately blocky or unnatural. Assuming they nail the other elements which are meant to enhance immersion and visual realism then the cover mechanics will only add to the overall effect and further improve basic combat in a very general way.