Games: 8,115 | Reviews: 7,247 | Previews: 8,830 | News: 16,632 | Images: 210,948 | Videos: 14,937

Throne of Darkness Preview

"We preview the classes, combat, multiplay, graphics, and monsters of this upcoming samurai-based RPG from Blizzard alums, Click Entertainment."

Although it won't hit store shelves until early 2001, Throne of Darkness from Click Entertainment and Sierra Studios is one title that action-RPG fans will want to watch closely. Throne of Darkness combines the hack-and-slash gameplay of Diablo with the rich historical texture of feudal Japan and some tactical elements as well. Throne of Darkness will introduce a few new twists in both single- and multiplayer action, as well as a slick system for acquiring spells and magic items. To top things off, the game boasts crisp, highly detailed graphics and animation that are impressive even at this early stage. Although the press build we played is extremely early and incomplete, it's not hard to see the tremendous potential of this game.

Larger images in gallery

Larger images in gallery

The story of Throne of Darkness centers on the shogun Kira Tsunayoshi, an inept ruler who had forsaken the four gods in favor of cold, hard cash. Punished by the gods for straying, Tsunayoshi found himself on death's door. His only chance for survival was a strange monk bearing a supposed elixir of immortality. But while the strange potion saved the shogun's life, one of its hidden side effects changed him into a vile demon. Altered by this newfound power, the shogun, now the demon Zanshin, had his armies drink the elixir as well. Then, commanding a legion of undead warriors and demons, he assaulted the four daimyo who jointly ruled the land. But Zanshin reined in his forces too early, mistakenly thinking that he had already wiped out all of the daimyo. The one left alive marshaled his remaining samurai - all seven of them - to send against the countless minions of Zanshin.

Larger images in gallery

Larger images in gallery

If this all sounds a bit familiar, it is. The gameplay in Throne of Darkness is very much like Diablo except that you generally control more than one character at a time. And the "few against many" theme is alive and well in this game. With only seven samurai at your disposal - each of which has different abilities and strengths - you must fight your way through countless evil samurai and demons. The ultimate goal, of course, is to defeat Zanshin, the Dark Warlord. To be successful, you will have to not only survive in battle but also give thanks to your gods and carefully organize the few heroes left to command.

Posted on Aug 23, 2000