Darksiders 2 and the Wii U, Revolutionizing Combat

Over at CVG, Darksiders 2 producer Ryan Stefanelli has been talking up the changes and improvements to the Darksiders franchise, and how the Wii U has been helping out.  If you really want to read all about the game, head on over to the interview.  If you’re just interested in the bits about the Wii U, read on.

As we learned in Ocarina of Time, having a touchscreen inventory that allows you to quickswitch in the middle of gameplay is a huge deal, and can actually make a massive difference, even though it’s a relatively small thing.

Just to have something on the touch screen, we put the inventory and map systems on the controller – and even that small thing makes a big difference. When you collect a new piece of loot, you just look down to see if you want it, and can equip it instantly. I can’t say for sure if that’ll be in the final cut, but it’s really cool that the gameplay experience never has to be broken up by changing out equipment.

Yes it’s much easier to drag things around in an inventory with your fingers (think rearranging your app icons on your Android or iPhone) than it is with a thumbstick, but what really matters is the flow and pace of the game, and how it’s interrupted every time you go into your backpack.

It allows for quick weapon and equipment swaps. For example, you could have two different equipment sets for Death – one that’s geared towards heavy weapons and big armour, and another that’s designed for mobility and quick strikes.
On the Wii U, all it would take to switch from one to the other would be a hot button on the touch screen, and multiple swaps could be made during an intense combat without ever pausing.

That sounds awesome.  Thinking to the combat in Relic’s WarHammer 40K: Space Marine, one of the things that made it a great deal of fun was the seamless switching between melee and ranged weapons, and the ability to quick-roll out of danger to switch things up.  It’s been done before, but it was smoothed out and flow was the main priority and it took what could have been a mediocre hall shooter and turned it into a fantastically enjoyable combat game.  Take that idea and pull it out further wherein you’re actually changing entire equipment sets on the fly and it’s like you’re playing multiple characters at the same time.  I don’t care who you are, that’s exciting.

And as a bonus, we get to hear how absurdly easy it is to get your game running on the WiiPad instead of the TV.

Our one and only goal once we got the Wii U hardware was to get Darksiders II running on it. We didn’t even have running the game on the touch screen on our ‘to do’ list. But once we got it running, we just fooled around with getting it on the touch screen as a lark. It took all of five minutes and two lines of code, and boom! – there was the entire game running on the controller. Amazing.

Source – Thanks CVG!


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Author: Micah View all posts by
Micah has been playing games since his first pong machine, and has been writing for as long as he could grip a pencil and not drool on the paper. So, for about a week.

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