Some of the worries about the new Thief title from Eidos Montreal come from how a studio can make a big-budget stealth game that will appeal to a mass audience. Hardcore fans of the series worry that the game will watered down but in a new community podcast, lead game designer Alexandre Breault revealed a huge amount of customization options both in the user interface and difficulty levels.
The player can seemingly remove all of the UI elements, including navigation and interaction prompts, health meter, and hints. Some of the options can be set to either on/off or fade when they're not active. You can also remove prompts for loot which is going to make things interesting. Of course the temptation is to turn off all the UI to show how "hardcore" you are but I'd imagine it'll be a case of turning off what you don't really need.
Then there's the difficulty settings which are moddable too: starting with a base level of easy, medium or hard, you will be able to disable things like the use of takedowns, autosaves, and aiming reticles. However there is a crazy set of presets to make an Ultimate Thief mod; you'll fail a mission if you are detected or kill/knockout an enemy; non-critical upgrades are disabled, and if you are killed during a mission, you will have to restart the game! Wow, that is an ironman mode if ever I heard one.
As much as I'm a sucker for punishment I think I might just wuss out when it comes to some of the harder stuff here. These are all a good decisions by Eidos Montreal because it means the more seasoned players can adjust Thief to their liking and that's a welcome move.
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