We had a meeting with THQ Nordic to learn more about their upcoming action-based RPG, ELEX.
When I was first presented with the trailer above, I got the inFamous vibe from it, but I learned that it really isn’t that kind of game at all. Sure, the decisions you make will definitely alter the course of the game’s plot, but I was assured that this is a pure action RPG through and through.
Developed by Piranha Bytes, the same studio that brought us Gothic and Risen, ELEX is an action RPG that gives you access to an open world where you can nearly do everything you can hope to do. You can go straight to the final area at the beginning of the game if you’d like, but it would be a tough and arduous journey should you be up to that challenge–so you probably shouldn’t.
Though it takes place in a post-apocalyptic world, the visual environments featured were lush, really showing off the development team’s engine. It’s the best of what a sci-fi world and fantasy world can bring together, and it all looks good. We were treated to B-roll footage exploring forest areas, rainy encampments, enemy strongholds, and even the depths of a volcano–all of which looked amazing, so ELEX is setting itself up to be no slouch in the visual department. There aren’t any loading screens either, totally immersing players into the world.
As far as how the game plays, it’ll draw comparisons to The Witcher, but the menus seemed a lot less complicated. The actual exploration and action part of the gameplay all looked and seemed to feel solid. The weapons system is a complex one as you can enchant them, but at least the developers stated that they don’t break as it’s more action-based than survival-based. You can even hover around in a jetpack, making traveling in the open worlds a whole lot easier.
Experience points in the game are gathered through combat and by going through sequences essential to the plot.
When interacting with other characters, you can respond and do whatever you want, and the NPC’s will react to your actions. For example, at the beginning of the game you’ll meet a character who’ll show you the ins and outs of the area you’re in, expecting you to follow him. You can choose not to follow him, and he’ll already make different judgements about you. You’re also expected to act like a good citizen, so if you barge into other people’s homes and break their pots or anything like that, you’ll be marked as a criminal.
It’s not really that label that matters though. ELEX featured four factions that you can join — the Alb, the Berserker, the Kleriker, and the Outlaw — all of which should have an effect on your style of play.
ELEX is shaping up to be quite a profound RPG, and it should be a title to look out for when it comes out in October.
Editor’s Update: We originally said in our preview that the game would be out in August. It’ll be out in October, barring any delays or changes.