Asgard’s Wrath is coming soon from Sanzaru Games as an Oculus Rift exclusive and we’ve seen new combat footage and found out more about the game’s details. We still haven’t had a chance to go hands-on with the title just yet, but we will be playing it in just a few days at the press-only pre-GDC event Oculus is hosting on Monday in San Francisco, CA.
Other than the announcement trailer (linked below), the original reveal, and some brief gameplay footage, we didn’t know very much about the game at all. Now, some new gameplay footage spotted by RoadtoVR on the official Sanzaru Discord server and a big exclusive hands-on report from Game Informer have revealed lots of new details.
To recap: Asgard’s Wrath is a first-person action-adventure VR game with RPG elements in which you are a God with the power to take control of certain select mortal characters. Each of the characters you can control will feature unique abilities and playstyles and you can switch between the ground hero and your God form while playing.
While reading the four-page exclusive hands-on in the latest issue of Game Informer this month, a lot of new details jumped out at me — specifically with regard to the animal companion system. You can see near the end of the debut trailer above that when in God form you can do things like pluck a bird from the sky and turn it into a powerful bird-soldier-thing to fight with you or even take over creatures like to put them by your side.
According to Game Informer, this is a pretty robust system that goes beyond just simply possessing creatures. You’ll be able to establish bonds with the animals and creatures you control through fighting together, giving high fives, and generally spending time with them by your side while playing. The stronger your bond, the greater the benefit they provide in and out of battle. We saw a bit of the interactivity here.
Since each companion will have different abilities, you’ll need to experiment throughout the game with various buddies to see which areas they can be used to unlock at different spots. It’s got a bit of a Metroidvania feel to it all in this regard it sounds like.
Then there’s the amazing-looking combat. While it doesn’t appear to be a physics-based system like Blade & Sorcery, the fluidity of animations and effects is pretty remarkable. If it looks this nice visually in GIFs and videos on a flat monitor screen, I can’t wait to see what it looks like in fully immersive 3D from inside of a VR headset.
In the series of GIFs down below you can see it in all of its visceral, gory action. Things like boomerang battle axes, sword parries, dismemberment, and more are all on display and it looks fantastic.
We still don’t know too much about the story in Asgard’s Wrath, but it does sound like something fishy is going on. Supposedly, you’re in service of Loki and are tasked with helping out humanity in return for a magical essence that Loki is collecting. You’re not told for what purpose at first, which certainly leaves me skeptical someone known as the Trickster God isn’t up to something diabolical.
Thor, Loki’s brother, is in fact in the game — but these are not the Marvel characters. They’re purely based on the Norse Gods and aren’t the superhero versions from the MCU or comics. Naturally, Thor is also skeptical of Loki and (as a result) you.
There will be multiple plot threads and side quests to pursue with large, open areas to explore. Originally we reported that Asgard’s Wrath would be 30+ hours in length and now Game Informer is saying it’s closer to 40 hours to complete all content, find all hidden areas, and finish everything in the game. That’s a very healthy length.
On your back you’ve got four different equipment slots to keep handy, but there’s also a full inventory selection mechanic of some kind as well for storing various items from weapons and gold to quest-related objects.
Other random tidbits of information gleaned from the game’s Discord server and developer comments:
- Weapons can break, but they can also be repaired,
- Most enemies will drop weapons you can immediately use after you kill them and you can store weapons in your inventory,
- There will be an immersive mode that turns off the HUD, damage numbers, and other UI elements so you can purely immerse yourself in the game,
- Some weapons you find in the game world will have elemental effects already imbued on them, such as ice effects that freeze enemies,
- Dismemberment is not automatic. You can lop off heads and arms and other specified body parts but you need to follow-through fully on your swing,
- Some enemies will be shielded (as shown in the GIFs above) with a blue bar above their green health bar. The best way to get rid of their shield is to parry one of their powerful “signature” attacks,
- Parrying signature attacks must be done with a weapon, not a shield,
- Higher level enemies will have more variety in attacks and animations.
And that’s about it! We should have a lot more information to share next week after we go hands-on with Asgard’s Wrath, Stormland, and multiple Quest titles at GDC 2019. Let us know what you think so far down in the comments below!