E3 2014 – Hellraid Impressions

Hellraid is probably the least exciting game when you read it off a press release or an E3 lineup. What could a medieval fantasy hack and slash offer that something like Skyrim didn’t already do to death? The basic premise is of a lone hero who joins forces with a powerful mage in order to put a stop to a crazed occult researcher that has taken residence in the catacombs doesn’t exactly do any favors to the game either.

Still, to its benefit, Hellraid‘s hands-off demo at E3 delivered big hits and very gory bits. While it did not show anything particularly mind-blowing, the chaos that took place during combat sections. Combo weapons and magic can be used to exploit weaknesses and turn the tide to your advantage. Some of the bigger monsters could only be defeated by specific spells, and tried as he might, the dev handling the demo could not scratch some foes with just his big-ass hammer.

Visually, Hellraid looks great already. Techland has an architect in house working as a level designer, so the few sections of the game that were shown looked realistic and lived in enough as they were fantastical, filled with skeletons and zombies.

Speaking of zombies, these were the sickest of enemies at that demo. Shambling ghouls that had open wounds did their best to make everyone in the room as queasy as possible by punching their wounds and throwing bits of flesh and gore towards the camera. Gross out designs seem to be Hellraid‘s twist, which include a stronger enemy towards the end of the demo who was visually impaired by the sheer absurdity of having a helm bolted onto his skull.

Hellraid is still far from seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Techland’s sight is at a release sometime next year, for the newer gen of consoles and PC.

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