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E3 2013: Nekro (Hands-On)

by: Matt -
More On: E3 2013 Nekro
     Every Indie developer out there is hoping to hit it big at E3, get the buzz out about their product that not a lot of people are going to know about without the help of some coverage. The guys at darkForge games are no exception to this predicament, their game Nekro is currently battling it out on the Steam Greenlight service, and the team is hopeful that their game will emerge victorious. What makes this game so special? It took a little bit of hands-on time to get the idea, but after playing Nekro, I am nothing but hopeful for their success.

     Nekro is the story of an alchemist, who's desire to please his king has taken him down a dark path. Tasked with creating a potion of eternal life, Nekro's success was ultimately his undoing, his king displeased with the result of his labor. However it is thanks to his unnatural concoction that he is able to seek his revenge. In doing so he has become a necromancer, with the ability to summon demons from the corpses of his defeated enemies. In doing so he is capable of amassing a large army of creatures that he can use to destroy the kingdom that spurned him. 

    The short demo gave me access to five different creatures that I could summon, each offering a different ability. The dark tendrils functioned as a basic ranged attack. Giving Nekro the ability to close the gap on fleeing enemies, or push back an enemy that charges in. The bat like creatures are great for swarming enemies, especially when I activated their skill that produces two of them when I sacrifice a body. The Punge creature makes for a great tank and can keep the heat off Nekro. The maw-like creature can grab hold of enemies, and with a mash of the summoning key, he can deal extra damage to the enemy he is holding. Lastly there's a Shade, a flying creature that creates a field that slows down enemies and when leveled up, can deal damage to enemies within that field. All of these summons require just one little thing, blood, well, and a body, but those are in ready supply. Blood however is acquired by choice, you can either take your enemy's blood, or you can use their body for a nefarious summon. There are also some rather friendly pigs who seems to give up their blood willingly, well as willingly as a beast of burden rolling around in mud can.

     The visuals for the game are looking pretty good, and a lot of them were done through the Unity engine that the game runs on. The art direction looks great with a lot of wild designs for both Nekro and the creatures that he summons. You'd be surprised to learn that the team working on Nekro is made up of only four people. Currently the game feels like the best of Myth, Giants: Citizen Kabuto, and Dungeon Keeper, which the creators are quite fond of. Controlling a small horde of creatures and watching them tear up a small town and its mayor is certainly a satisfying experience, I hope the creature variety is there to keep things from getting stale. There are also plenty of world events that are randomly assigned to a level at any given time that seem to help or hinder Nekro in his quest for revenge.

    If you're interested in checking out Nekro, be sure to visit the Steam Greenlight page to see screenshots and video of the game in action and give them a vote!