Sacred 3 Preview
If you recall the likes of Baldurs Gate: Dark Alliance and Champions of Norrath with a particular fondness, you miss the dungeon-crawlers of old. That’s why Deep Silver has a tonic to sate your desire: It’s the follow-up to the somewhat flawed yet still entertaining Sacred 2: Fallen Angel, simply called Sacred 3. To complement the upcoming game’s release, developer Southend Interactive will deliver Sacred Citadel, a side-scrolling brawler that will act as a sequel.
As for Sacred 3, it’ll boast that nonstop action/RPG fun that so many of us still enjoy. The story is basically a footnote when it comes to such adventures, but for the sake of creating a complete preview, I’m compelled to offer the baseline information. The Seraphim have guarded the legendary “Heart of Ancaria” for centuries but over time, the people have forgotten these divine guardians. In their absence, the ruler of the Ashen Empire, Lord Zane, has sided with Demons, and he’s attempting to open the gates of hell. If he obtains the Heart of Ancaria, all hope is lost.
But really, we’re not going to care much about the narrative. Here’s hoping it’s at least mildly interesting but for the most part, fans of this genre aren’t counting on a gripping, memorable storyline. They are counting on some fast-paced hack ‘n slash entertainment with robust role-playing depth, and plenty of longevity due to distinct classes and fresh cooperative options. New classes include the powerful Safiri Warrior and the Ancarian Lancer, and each class will have a bevy of passive and active skills that will give them the advantage in battle.
These games were always best enjoyed with a friend (or two), so it’s great to hear that the designers are implementing four-player co-op. And no, you don’t have to be online. Local multiplayer appears to be falling by the wayside these days, so it’s nice to see a relatively old-school title embracing an “old-fashioned” multiplayer method. Loot, pillage, and conquer with your friends; it’s the only way to go! The team wanted to create a game that boasts “immersive and engaging co-op gameplay,” and Deep Silver Brand Manager Remy van Leeuwen drove this point home by saying:
“The paramount development goal for Sacred 3 has been to create a seamless online and offline co-op experience. By creating a game built around the central concept of co-op gameplay, we’re expanding the series to new audiences without compromising the rich lore and fantasy of the Sacred universe.”
Other playable characters include the Seraphim, Khukuhru and Malakhim, all of which will have their own strengths and weaknesses. Yes, the last entry didn’t really live up to expectations, but Deep Silver has acknowledged that Quality Assurance was a problem with that game, so it has become a “very important milestone” in the development of the newest installment. Let’s hope that’s true. For all you hack ‘n slash aficionados who know a few willing buddies, Sacred 3 is a definite consideration. It’ll be here on August 26, but bear in mind it will only be available for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC; it won’t be released for next-gen consoles.
4/22/2014 Ben Dutka