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Dark Messiah of Might and Magic : Elements to tongue-twist its way to 360

7:53 PM on 07.04.2007 // Joseph Leray

Seriously, Ubisoft's latest Xbox 360 game is a mouthful. When you need a preposition and a colon to qualify a game from the others in the series, then maybe, just maybe, it's time for a new IP.

Okay, so my criteria are a little thin, but consider this: there were 9 games in the original Might and Magic series, spin-offs of which include Heroes, Crusaders, Warriors, and Legends of Might and Magic, with multiple games in each of those franchises. There was even a spin-off of the Heroes spin-off called Heroes Chronicles. Point is, there's a lot of f*cking Might and Magic floating around.

Well, the guys at Ubisoft decided that a 360 port of Dark Messiah, originally released last year for the PC, was in order. And, thanks to Valve, Arkane Studios, and the Source Engine, that's exactly what's going to happen early next year.

That being said, DMoMaM:E is, essentially, a variation on a theme that dates back to at least 1995. Oh Hexen, how I loved thee! With a generic-looking knight, save the world from the Dark Messiah, again. Kill other generic-looking demons with Might (or Magic), again. Anybody notice a trend here?

On the other hand, what Dark Messiah lacks in originality, it makes up for by being cancer-curingly stunning. The environment is detailed, the characters are crisp and sharp, and there's a definite lack of that sexy next current-gen brown. Also of interest is that the chick in the white halter with the normal-sized boobs seems to be named Leanna.

Lastly, I want to let you guys ponder this:

Immerse yourself in a gritty first-person experience with complete body awareness, realistic movements and physics rendering, making Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements the first action game to feature a complete first-person combat system.

Anybody want to challenge that statement? I'm almost positive that first-person combat is a pretty widespread occurence in the wide world of video gaming. Or is there some kind of subtle, technical, read-the-fine-print nuance in that sentence that I'm missing?

Today Ubisoft, one of the world's largest video game publishers, announced that it will launch Dark Messiah of Might and Magic™: Elements for the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft.

Powered by the award-winning Source® engine created by Valve® for its Half-Life®2 video game, the game will allow Xbox 360 gamers worldwide to experience the brutal combat, highly detailed interactive environments and dark atmosphere that won the hearts of thousands of PC players, while building and expanding the experience in several areas. Players will have to use the environment as a weapon to outsmart the most fiendish monsters.

Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements is being developed by Ubisoft's Annecy studio, supported by Valve and Arkane Studios. Ubisoft Annecy has been critically acclaimed for the innovative multiplayer modes in Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell® games.

About Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements:

In Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements, players will be introduced to the dark and unforgiving world of Ashan, scarred by a bloody history and threatened by the apocalyptic prophecy of the Dark Messiah.

The game will sport a refined experience thanks to several improvements in gameplay, design and other technical aspects. Players will embody the young hero Sareth and choose his evolution path to acquire spells, skills and abilities that will set his destiny.

Key Features of Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements for Xbox 360 include:

More action, new challenges. Experience Might and Magic® like never before, with refined game mechanics carefully crafted for pad-controlled carnage, including a brand new lock-on feature and tweaked level design and game statistics. Explore three previously unreleased secret levels with new objectives, gameplay, and rewards.

Multiplayer remixed. New multiplayer maps have been created exclusively for Xbox 360, while all other features have been completely remastered for an optimal Xbox LIVE® experience, allowing you to play with up to 10 players. Enlist with the Humans or the Undead and choose to play as an archer, priestess, mage or knight. Make use of powerful and unique skills and spells on the battlefield, including powers such as meteor shower, berserk charge and rain of arrows.

Cutting-edge technology. Discover the power of the Source engine on Xbox 360, featuring jaw-dropping environments, incredible graphics and top-notch physics. Immerse yourself in a gritty first-person experience with complete body awareness, realistic movements and physics rendering, making Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements the first action game to feature a complete first-person combat system.

· Environmental mischief. Use your environment as a weapon to outsmart the most fiendish monsters. From bottomless pits to diabolical traps, players will find that that their spells and weapons are not always the most effective solution to dispatching their foes.

Never-ending action. Challenge the forces of evil across 12 chapters and master over 30 weapons and 12 devastating spells. Engage the enemy in intense melee combat with swords, bows, staffs and daggers; summon magic powers or sneak in the shadows to stalk depraved creatures. Show no mercy as you carve deep into the enemy's flesh and use the environment as a weapon to outsmart the most fiendish monsters.

The Might and Magic universe's darkest side. From bottomless pits to abandoned temples, dark catacombs and swelled cities, explore the remotest recesses of Ashan, populated with fearless Orcs, dreadful Undead, elusive Cyclops and many other creatures that defy nature's creation. This is the darkest side of the legendary Might and Magic universe, where the forces of evil are stronger and more cunning than ever.

Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements will be released in Q1 2008. For more information, please visit

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Joseph Leray, Former Features Contributor
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Joseph Leray is a long-time features contributor, reviewer, and (self-styled) editor-at-large for Destructoid. He lives in Nashville with a menagerie of pets and a Final Fantasy IX obsession. more   |   staff directory

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