Jericho is Clive Barker’s latest game and it was playable here at the Games Convention in Leipzig. At the booth, the security guy was very strict about not letting anyone below the age of eighteen in. The demo only contained one level but it gave a good first impression of the game which has a release date set in the fourth quarter of the year.
The entire demo, including speech was in German which is kind of a letdown considering it sounds funny now instead of scary. Without too much background information given, you and your teammates venture into an area which looks like some sort of cave. You can switch between your teammates with the press of a button. The reason you’d want to do this is that each one of them has different weapons and skills. One guy holds a simple pistol and a melee weapon which looked like a large hammer. The other (controllable) teammate had a sniper rifle and a grenade launcher. Special powers are also among the arsenal which each member having a different one. The demo only contained two with the first one being telekinesis, to move objects with your mind and the second one was a large fireball which can illuminate the entire room. The enemies looked very Clive Barker-ish which means they looked like pure evil as you can see on the screenshots in this post, but they look better in motion.
The only level in the demo was very dark and enemies kept surprising out of nowhere, but luckily you’re equipped with a short range flashlight. Instead of swapping between the flashlight and your weapons like in Doom 3, you can use them at the same time. It’s still scary though if you hear something is coming your way but you can’t see it right away.
At the end of the demo you head down a well, and in order to descend you have to press buttons in the right order. Then all of a sudden a monster is coming after you and the buttons have to be pressed a lot faster than before. When you have arrived at the bottom, the monster jumps you and you have to press buttons again really really fast or you’ll die. While battling the monster you get a good close-up of his face which looks really scary.
The graphics which are being rendered by Mercury Steam Entertainment’s custom-built engine are great looking and not a single framedrop could be noticed. Textures looked sharp and the lightning was especially realistic and impressive. Enemies looked like they were all wet and covered with slime which is clearly visible on the screenshots. Apart from the German language, the audio was what you’d expect from a game like this with lots of ’scary sounds’ and monsters making weird noises.
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Despite the demo being short, the impression was pretty good, it definitely doesn’t feel like just another shooter. Especially the squad based combat with each member having different abilities is pretty fun and inspires you to be creative in your killing. With Clive Barker taking care of the story behind the title we don’t really expect any disappointments there.