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As previously reported, in Soul Sacrifice, players will find themselves making a lot of different choices as they progress through the story of a sacrificial lamb fighting through an evil sorcerer's past in the form of a living book to gain the power to fight for his/her freedom. Japan's gaming magazine Weekly Famitsu has revealed that your choices will also have an effect on your character's appearance.
Sacrificing monsters will strengthen your magic level, while saving them increases your life level. Your level in magic or life will determine what sort of status bonus the various upgrades you obtain will offer and focusing on one or the other will alter your character into either a "Law" or "Chaos" form. The top image above shows the level 1 Law status. Only a shaded image of the Chaos status has been released.
The "appearance-based-on-alignment" sort of system is nothing new (One of my good friends used to complain about his characters in Knight of the Old Republic constantly getting "Sith AIDS" back in 2003). While arguments could be given on the validity of the unrealistic "second-coming-of-Christ vs baby-eater" moral dichotomy in games, and the fact that seeing the effects of your actions in the form of aesthetic alteration can take away some of the player's choice by encouraging only one sort of action or another, there is a level of satisfaction that comes from watching a character progress in the form of a greater change in appearance.
Sony has also released information on companions that you will meet through your adventures. Companions each have their own alignment and your actions/choices in the game will either raise or decrease their allegiance with you. While normally you can meet and choose from over 100 different companions for free quests only, there are some main story specific companions who join you on your quest. So far 3 of these companions' names and details have been revealed (Click through the slide show to see).
Soul Sacrifice is scheduled for release in Japan on March 7th, in North America on April 30th, and in Europe on May 1st.
A strange and seemingly unbalanced young mage. Percival speaks in broken sentences and follows the protagonist like a lost child. The right half of his disfigured body is an indicator of the powerful magic he controls. He also has a habit of scratching his chest until it bleeds (His reason being that he is "sick").
Gewein is an aggressive mage, plagued by a powerful werewolf. Gewein has spent 10 years hunting the werewolf and has sacrificed his own eye in search of the beast. Many of his companions have fallen prey to the creature, yet why it continuously hounds (heh heh) him remains a mystery.
A loyal servant and powerful mage. Lanslot's strength has earned him a place beside a king notorious for his hate of mages. Though he has a reputation as an obedient lapdog, Lanslot has his own hidden objective that he fights for.
Last week I found myself in two conversations about resurrecting dead games. One was about Homeworld: I’d made a flippant comment about pressuring Relic to do a Kickstarter to make a sequel, and other people agreed. If Double Fine can raise millions for a point ‘n click, then why not millions for our lost and beloved space RTS? The other was about Syndicate. Wouldn’t it be great if we got a Syndicate sequel, finally, in the way we got a “proper” X-Com remake? No right-minded gamer would disagree. Hell, Paradox even seem to be planning to do so.
But I got to thinking about how this turn to “how games used to be” shouldn’t be about nostalgia, or the past at all, really. It should be about the future. The point of looking back must be to identify, rescue and save the futures we were promised>.