A few years ago, the small team at The Outsiders showed off a fascinating game – codenamed Project Wight (opens in new tab) – which casts you as a monster and challenges you to kill the crap out of some people. As IGN (opens in new tab) revealed today, that game is back with a new name, Darkborn, and it’s still unabashedly centered around hunting down humans.
Darkborn’s new gameplay demo expands on the ideas we heard about in 2017. You play as a young humanoid monster whose tribe is slaughtered by humans. Your immediate goal is to avenge your family by tracking down and dismembering the human shaman(?) who killed them. But to do that, you’re going to need to get stronger – you are, after all, just a young monster.
You can gain new Darkborn powers by receiving “Death Gifts” from your fallen brethren, and it’s possible other abilities are tied to defeating human bosses. The demo features a glide ability, some sort of wrist-mounted venomous dart, and what looks like a retractable whip made of your own dang flesh. It also shows off a, uh, beast mode which lets you execute any enemies you come across for a limited time. I also like the narrator which guides you on your quest for revenge. She sounds like a mix of video game tutorial bla-bla and, more interestingly, animal instinct given a voice. Pretty cool stuff.
The moment-to-moment action looks like a mix of stealthy takedowns and first-person melee combat, with the demo leaning more on the latter as you grow up and gain more powers. Little baby monster has to stick to the trademarked Stealth Grass, but big-old adult monster can separate limbs with the best of ’em. After seeing the repetitive-looking boss fight at the end of the demo, I have to admit I’m currently more interested in playing as a stealthy baby monster, but then again this is a pre-alpha build.
Darkborn has been in development for three years already, but The Outsiders doesn’t have a release date in mind yet. The studio did say it’s targeting PC first with potential console releases close behind.
With open-world shark RPG Maneater (opens in new tab) also on the docket, I’m loving this trend of “become the monster.”