Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the Pyro Enterprises E3 Showcase!
We've got a lot to showcase these next few days, but sadly, due to real-life scheduling, no real art could be done for the showcase. Instead, it'll all be in sketch format until real art can be made. Regardless, we hope you enjoy!
"How many Heroes came to this planet?"
"How many are left?"
"Who knows. Some were killed by the other Heroes. Some were killed by that thing?"
"Do we even stand a chance? This is the god of my world. The god of another dimension. What hope do you have?"
Heroforce is my baby. This is the thing that I've arguably put the most of my energy into, the thing I want to make real, the thing that I want to be my legacy. Luckily, development should be nearing the finishing stages soon. Of course, you're expecting new information. And I have that.
NEW HEROES JOIN THE BATTLE!
Sloxius is the definition of a DPS character. Hailing from the toxic swampy world of Arcanemia, Sloxius's race is one of the most poisonous in existence. Sloxius's main role in combat is poisoning enemies; his attacks are weak, but not only do they almost always give a minor poison effect to the target, but they also build up a Dark Souls-esque poison gauge that, when full, inflict a much more debilitating Lethal Poison effect. Sloxius can also impact the fight inactively by laying down massive puddles of poison; if you encounter an enemy poison pool, just continuously dodge through it.
Sloxius's Overdrive move is Toxicity, and acts as a universal attack that cannot be avoided. Toxicity fires a wave across the entire battlefield, dealing very slight damage to all opponents but also lowering all their stats and inflicting Lethal Poison. Sloxius as a whole does little on his own, but can soften up almost any target for others to kill.
Andromedea is a High Novium, a race of aliens birthed from pure stardust as opposed to the carbon most lifeforms are made of. She's ethereal, mysterious, inexplicable, and quirky. Much like Fantendo character Ciriesta, Andromedea's fighting style is essentially bullet-hell; she focuses on throwing as many projectiles as humanly possible at once. They aren't too strong, but the patterns she can fire them in require strict dodging to avoid. Of course, this also means every single attack Andromedea has can be reflected...
Andromedea's Overdrive move is Nebula Rings. Activate this and Heroforce becomes a 3D Touhou, with Andromedea's attacks becoming significantly more bullet-helly and a passive barrage of bullets emanating from here. If your opponents can dodge well, then Andromedea will strike at their very core.
Myto is a cell-like Nuclean, essentially a giant single-celled organism. He is a bulky yet slow fighter with one distinguishing gimmick; his Mitosis ability. The use of this ability removes some of his HP to summon an identical replica of himself, save an HP-reducing debuff and the inability to use Mitosis. Summoning another copy heals all the existing ones, so constant spawning lets Myto form a veritable army to conquer anything.
Myto's Overdrive move is Cell Burst. Use this move, and all of Myto's clones detonate, dealing heavy damage. The HP that Myto spent to form the clones also returns to him, so it has two major benefits. Craft an army and set out to conquer!
Hyvilia is a shy, pacifistic Vespoid mechanics drone who, like Sloxius, does not deal direct damage. She's basically the game's equivalent to the Engineer or Torbjorn, constructing turrets that stand their ground and assault any enemy who comes near. Of course, she can also summon heal turrets that target allies or alternate types of attack turrets. Hyvilia herself is frail and barely attacks, so keep an eye on her.
Hyvilia's Overdrive move is Hyveworks Armor, and it places her inside what is pretty much Robobot Armor with a bee-like design. The armor is extremely powerful, amping her strength considerably, and grants her both miniguns to deal ranged damage and the ability to actively pick up and move turrets about the battlefield.
Our last hero for today is Diarno, a Colbaltian who seems tough but is really just a lumbering idiot akin to Big the Cat. Diarno is a mixture of Reinhardt and Mei, acting as a defense-oriented character. He can use his shield to protect those close to him, but can also summon walls of ice for far-off defense. He's slow but also very powerful; a definite target if he's on the other team.
Diarno's Overdrive move is Defense Up, and it's a rally cry that does exactly what you think it does. This buff makes Diarno near invincible while it lasts, but just like the Rainmaker in Splatoon, the buff also passes on to teammates who touch him; one Defense Up can make a whole team near-unkillable.
Of course, every meaningful update to Heroforce has been to add Heroes.
And where is a game without a villain- a final boss.
From the beginning, Lucius has been one of Heroforce's most mysterious characters, trying to prevent the battle over the superplanet Coronite he seemed to know was coming. Part of this is due to natural instinct; Lucius is a native of the planet, a fact once implied and now confirmed. However, there is a much darker reason for his warnings... The super powerful energy stored in the planet's core.
It's not a core at all.
Behold Coronite, the former war god of Lucius's people that somehow awoke and began slaughtering everyone in the quadrant. It has consumed the mass and energy of countless worlds, Lucius being the first Hero to have actually sealed it away in the massive planet of its own creation.Now, however, the war over the planet between all 64 Heroes have awoken him once again... And now he's right in the middle of all the remaining races in the universe.
This is the final boss of Heroforce.
Heroforce's story mode is a campaign mode, following Fera and Lucius as they and the other Heroes venture forth to try putting a stop to Coronite. Unfortunately, they have more competition; the Terran government has betrayed the contract set by the Catalogers and the other races, placing hundreds of troops on the planet to harvest the godly power as well as officially decommissioning Fera as Hero, replacing her with synthetic Hero Widi.
This local co-op mode is the ultimate test- the real end to Heroforce's story.
For now, at least.
Kirby: Robobot Revenge
"So... You remember me, right?"
"Susie, the charming secretary? From Haltmann Works Company? Tried to mechanize Pop Star and all?"
"Look, pinky, I wouldn't have come back if I didn't need your help. Y'see... Haltmann Works Company's homebase was on the planet Mekkai. Something went wrong and basically, some virus took over the entire planet and all the company assets. You are the only one I trust to fix this. So, will you... please help me?"
"I'll take that silence as a yes."
Kirby: Planet Robobot is a game that truly has me excited. And since I happen to have a Kirby trilogy in the works, why not make a sequel? It seemed obvious.
The story of Kirby: Robobot Revenge begins with a mech-riding Susie crashing into the ground at the side of Kirby's house, waking him up from a dream that is presumably about cake. While Kirby is ready to fight her at first, the frightened robot assures him that she means no harm, and that she actually needs his help. Mekkai, Susie's homeworld and the former headquarters of the Haltmann Works Company, has been taken over by a malevolent computer virus, and she is the only remaining employee who hasn't been hijacked by said virus. Kirby tells Susie that he's happy to assist, and she flies Kirby to Mekkai.
Robobot Revenge takes a lot of concepts from Planet Robobot and builds off of them. The basic Kirby gameplay is intact, and the Robobot Armor returns, but being on the actively hostile planet of Mekkai as opposed to Pop Star raises the game's difficulty a fair amount. Luckily, Kirby has gained access to 8 more abilities, 5 of them new, and the Robobot Armor has gained 7 new modes, bringing the total up to 20!. In fact, here are some new abilities and Armor Modes now!
- Missile, Paint, and Yo-yo are all returning from past games, each receiving a new updated moveset!
- The new Wizard ability takes inspiration from classic RPG mages and enables Kirby to switch between elements and use them to influence the spells he casts!
- The new Magnet ability grants Kirby the power to control things magnetically, tossing them about and manipulating electromagnetism!
- The Missile Mode transforms the Robobot Armor into a tank, complete with treads! Aim and fire missiles into either the background or Kirby's current plane!
- The Needle Mode grants the Robobot Armor dual drill arms! Use this to carve through dirt (or cake filling) at maximum speed, dealing massive damage to enemies!
- The Tornado Mode give the Robobot Armor a massive fan inside its mouth! This hyper-powered fan blows extreme gleforce winds, blowing objects around and pushing Kirby!
Of course, there's more than Abilities that you can use if you play as... Susie!
SUSIE JOINS THE TEAM!
Susie is in fact a full playable character! She plays significantly different from Kirby, having three Modes accessible at any time as opposed to swapping between abilities. Her Modes include:
- Offensive Mode, which takes attributes from the Fighter, Ninja, and Fire abilities.
- Ranged Mode, which takes attributes from the Spark, Archer, and Doctor abilities.
- Defensive Mode, which takes attributes from the Ice, ESP, and Mirror abilities.
In addition, all Robobot Armors Susie enters switch to the unique Susie Mode, which takes elements from the Sword, Fire, Beam, Cutter, Ice, and Bomb Armor Modes. As you can see, Susie is always prepared for any kind of puzzle, which is good, since her levels all encourage battling enemies over solving puzzles.
Susie doesn't just have a seperate campaign like Dedede and Meta Knight. Instead, Susie goes through entirely different worlds than Kirby; for example, Kirby's first world is Green Gears, whereas Susie's first world is Silicon Seaside. In addition, worlds have become longer than before, each having two bosses; a Fortress Boss, which is a giant mecha that must be fought in the Robobot Armor, and a Core Guardian, a smaller boss more akin to Kirby standards.
Each campaign has its own "final boss", but when both are cleared, the true final boss is revealed. Since you get access to the Kirby and Susie campaigns simultaneously, you can go at your own pace.
"The Blazing Bombardiers are closing in on the Zenosphere! This championship might be drawing to a close!"
"You said it, Bill. This month's AXIOM tournament has been absolutely insane! I've been glued to the edge of my seat the entire time!"
"And here comes local Terran sports star himself, Zinik Bolstar! Terra's newest upstart hotshot AXIOM competitor has dedicated his life to the galaxy's most violent and brutal sports, and all to keep his single mother and soldier sister taken care of."
"Truly, a great com- Oh my! Looks like Zinik's teammates have passed him a Hyperion Cannon!"
"Ted, this is gonna get ugly fast!"
"OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH! That was truly brutal! Looks like the Cobalt Crusaders are gonna be removing shrapnel and dirt from their bodies the next two weeks!"
"And isn't that exactly why people watch AXIOM?"
AXIOM is a new franchise by Pyro Enterprises that takes elements from two scrapped projects: the original incarnation of Axiom and the roguelite-inspired CRUX. I feel as though AXIOM is an important step for Pyro Enterprises as a whole, though why exactly I couldn't tell you.
Plot-wise, the game is set in approximately the year 8,000, where the most popular sport amongst the races of the galaxy is AXIOM. AXIOM is a semi-bloodthirsty combat-oriented sport where teams of players use powerful weapons and items to battle each other. Nearly every inhabited planet has a player-
"Wait", you may be asking, "this sounds a lot like Heroforce."
That was the intention. AXIOM is, despite the massive gameplay shift, the second game in the Heroforce canon, and is technically a prequel.
A QUARTET OF WAYS TO PLAY!
The basis of AXIOM is still a fighting game with a large roster, but it switches things up drastically. Instead of a Kid Icarus-inspired game, AXIOM takes inspiration from Power Stone, The Binding of Isaac, and Kirby Air Ride's City Trial mode. Going against competitive Smash rules, items are the key to victory in nearly every mode, and plenty of items are nothing but passive upgrades that synergize with each other and the player's moves. There are four main modes to the game, all of which can be modified in Settings.
The first mode is COMBAT. This is the Power Stone-inspired mode, where up to 6 players battle it out at once on a stage. This might be a good time to mention how combat works; the game plays at an isometric perspective like Power Stone, and players have a mix of light and heavy attacks, special attacks akin to Smash, a unique "skill" button that has different properties per character, and a ranged laser attack that deals little damage. In addition, every character has an AXIOM Shift, which is basically a Power Stone transformation that turns the character into an alternate form.
The second mode is CONFLICT. This mode is more akin to City Trial, placing up to 6 players in a gigantic map with a 7 minute time limit, setting them loose to do whatever they want. The primary goal is to collect as many stat-boosting AMPs as you can, but unlike City Trial, CONFLICT also drops normal active and passive items, so you can truly modify your character for the final challenge at the timer's end. Of course, you don't have to; you can try to grief other players instead of boosting yourself, or even search for pieces of Ultima Armors to give yourself a heavy boost in strength. Or just play around like in the old City Trial.
The third mode is CONQUEST, inspired by Team Kirby Clash. This mode places 6 players in a small map with a giant boss enemy in it, and it's up to the players to work together to take it down. Of course, you could always try to go for the glory yourself and take down your allies... but that's not very nice. There are 15 stages of CONQUEST to play through, plus a 16th FINAL CONQUEST if you Cobalt-Rank every stage.
The final mode is CAMPAIGN, and is 2-player maximum. This mode is essentially the game's Classic Mode, and is similar to rougelikes like The Binding of Isaac in that the stage layout is different every time, not to mention the management of resources like keys and credits as well as getting items every floor that add onto the character. It's very much a different game from the other three modes.
But enough of modes. Meet our first AXIOM competitor!
OUR FIRST FIGHTER!
Zinik Bolstar is the game's Terran representative, a hotshot competitive player with plenty of guts and a cybernetic arm. Zinik doesn't really play the game for personal glory, but just to keep a constant stream of prize money caring for his single mother and younger sister, currently in the Terran military.
Zinik is the game's Ryu equivalent, being the most well-rounded character in AXIOM. His basic attacks are little more than punches and kicks augmented by his cybernetic limb. His Skill is Reload, which leaves him vulnerable for a bit while he refills the ammo or energy of any weapon he happens to be holding.
Zinik's AXIOM Shift makes him fully cybernetic, not really shifting his stats around but granting him new attacks. Zinik-X swaps out Reload for X-Dash, which also has a vulnerability period but sends him charging forward a good distance, dealing damage to all in his path. Think of it as a big wavedash, since he can act out of it as well.
That's all we have on AXIOM for now!
"Look, just because I have to put up with you for a conceivable infinite amount of time doesn't mean I'm going to be nasty about the circumstances."
"Mint, you're the one who wanted to come with me."
"EXCUSES! The king knew how much of an asset to your mission I'd be and asked me! Just because I didn't mind getting out of the castle for once in my life doesn't mean I went to him!"
"Look, I know what we have to do, alright? Trust me, I'm a fairy. We always know what to do."
"...What do we have to do?"
"Get souls. Lots of them."
Masquerade is a title that I made as a dare to myself. I've never been able to make a successful Zelda game, so I decided to make an original IP inspired by the franchise and see if that actually had an impact on the article's progression. Not only is it far superior in my opinion, but people seem to actually like Masquerade over any and all Zelda project I've made. Thank you.
As such, it's only fair that I give a little more information on it.
SOULS: THE SPICE OF LIFE!
As stated before (and by Mint in the above excerpt), the goal of Masquerade is to purify the souls of the kingdom's denizens, transforming them into masks and carrying them with Masquera to the divine realm. Of course, you can also use the masks ala Majora's Mask to assume alternate transformations, each with unique properties.
Since time repeats, however, you can actually redo sidequests you've already done. What happens then? The Soul Salesman enters the equation.
The Masquerade equivalent of the Happy Mask Salesman or Poe Collector, the Soul Salesman takes the extra souls gained from repeat sidequests and offers a multitude of benefits to purchase with them. These range from upgrades to bonus outfits to even new masks entirely. Of course, somebody who's in the business of buying and selling souls may not be the most honest businessman. Especially with the cloak that hides his face.
A VAST WORLD TO EXPLORE!
The kingdom of Chronos is large, and there's no way you can traverse the entire thing in under two days without warping. This essentially means the kingdom is divided into six regions:
- Centrum, the grassy plains that surround Chrono Town and the Hierarch Castle. It's not actually the center of the kingdom geographically, but is the center economically.
- Arbor, a thick forest with a massive lake in the middle. Said lake supplies water to all of Chronos, so any given river leads back to this giant lake.
- Tropica, seaside paradise that forms a crescent moon shape along the side of the kingdom. There are some small islands out to sea, as well as a giant, menacing shipwreck said to be carrying treasure.
- Silica, a large and barren desert region blocked off by mountains from the rest of the kingdom. Surprisingly more advanced than the rest of Chronos, the region and inhabitants use magitech items regularly.
- Frostbound, a tiny northern region filled with snow. The only reason the inhabitants haven't frozen over by this point is due to Mt. Frostbound, an active volcano consistently on the verge of eruption.
- Gastra, another forested region. Something has happened to it as of late, and part of the woods seem to be dying off and shriveling as if due to poison. Also home to a mass graveyard. The two are probably linked.
Chronos as a whole hides 60 masks, each giving a unique transformation, meaning each region has approximately six, with small areas like Frostbound having fewer and large ones like Silica having more. Of course, you'll want more than masks as rewards...
Except that, somewhat akin to the original Majora's Mask, the true final boss is inaccessible without all 60 masks.
Speaking of bosses, that is Clear Criteria Numero Uno. Gain access to the Temple in all 6 regions and kill the boss, obtaining their Accursed Mask as a reward.
Project F Zone
"Leah, is this the best time for-"
"Of course! The entire building's been frozen over! We need to get the ice off one way or another!"
"...But you're seriously thinking of using an exploding gas tank to do the job?"
"Time is of the essence, Jack. At least this is better than the resort. This thing we can actually break."
"Look, Ms. Needlenam. Odds are whatever froze the building over so fast has done it to the rest of the city. What makes you think we're ready for this?"
"New guy, what's your name?"
"Moby, you have a lot to learn about how we do things around here."
Nothing much for Project F Zone. Other than a new trailer, that is.
The trailer begins in the middle of a city, which has been completely frozen over by something. A few people are shown walking around out in the cold winds...
???: Mother of mercy this is unbearable.
???: Well, I'm sorry, Silver. It's not like the apocalypse would be uncomfortable or anything.
???: Valerie, this isn't the apocalypse. As far as I know, the freezing was contained to this city.
Valerie: In all honesty, my point still stands. Grow a pair, you guys. Two of you are robots for God's sake.
The trailer continues, panning from the frozen city to a desert, also partially frozen over. More people are shown fighting against a massive golem made of ice.
???: ...Why is this thing in the desert?
???: Mercury, this isn't the time!
Mercury: Sugar, listen. There is no reason that there should be a LIVING ICE MONSTER in the DESERT.
Sugar: Well, it's real, alright. How you doing up there, new girl?
???: ...Alright, I guess.
Mercury: Good. When this is over, we're moving out. The city ain't gonna search itself.
The trailer flashes a second time, arriving in front of a large crystalline spaceship-like building. Two groups of two seem to be prepared to battle each other.
???: Guys, what are you doing protecting this thing? For all we know it could be the source of all this!
???: This also could be our only method of finding a way to reverse the freezing. If you destroy this, we might not have a way to-
???: He might be right, Corshama.
Corshama: We can't take any chances! Hein, Ligeia, you're going down!
This trailer was surprisingly time-consuming.
Anyways, we now have 5 new Pair Units- Valerie and Silver, Meta-Form and Cubey, Mercury and Sugar, Hama and Corshama, and Hein and Ligeia- as well as a new Solo Unit in the form of Meri! That's 11 characters overall!
"X: 23446864.68468. Y: 27684560546.32166. Z:631542624.46236."
"Search surrounding area for Nebulaic Energy."
"SEARCHING. PLEASE WAIT."
"Good... I can't believe that things actually got this bad..."
"NEBULAIC ENERGY DETECTED. [FOURTEEN] VESSELS DETECTED."
"Gods... Open the arsenal, Ai."
"ARSENAL OPENED... GOOD LUCK, MASTER KYANNA."
Finally, something I've been meaning to do for a while... a first-person shooter.
SHOOT STRAIGHT AND FLY RIGHT!
Planetary is set aboard the vessel G.S. Exastelia, a massive cargo freighter managed by Shipmistress Kyanna and the onboard artificial intelligence Mother Ai. All is going well until the Exastelia is attacked by space pirates, forcing Kyanna to unlock the arsenal and go driving them off herself.
The game is based off of the Metroid Prime series, having Kyanna exploring the freighter's various corridors in a first-person perspective and collecting upgrades and new weapons. The graphics, however, are more of a throwback, having N64/Dreamcast-style graphics in the vein of recent shooter Strafe. It's not old-school per se, but it is rather polygonal.
The game also extends itself to outside the Exastelia, granting Kyanna boosters and allowing her to battle in zero-G environments. This can be used to go from one end of the ship to another or to swim to and hijack an enemy vessel.
Of course, the main draw of Planetary is the arsenal. Being an interstellar trader has its benefits.
A KICK IN THE ARSENAL!
Planetary has over 75 weapons, each of which with a completely unique effect and attributes. Ammo is universal, so you don't have to worry about specific ammo drops, but Kyanna only has room to carry four at a time; weapons can be swapped out at storage booths around the Exastelia.
The weapons are intended to be unique, and even those that fall into the pistol/sniper rifle/SMG tropes are unique in some way. A shotgun that shoots hovering shells that home in on enemies that enter their proximity? You got it. A grenade that swaps the places of objects in the blastzone and those around Kyanna? Yep. A machine gun that generates electric energy as it fires, eventually culminating in the generation of an electric force field? The tip of the iceberg.
Every weapon and enemy are meant to encourage strategy and destruction, so try them all!