During a GDC panel that mainly focused on Eidos Montreal's struggle to create a distinct visual style for its Deus Ex prequel, art director Jonathan Jacques-Belletete slide a few gameplay details into his presentation. 

Deus Ex: Human Revolution takes place in the year 2027 and chronicles the rise of cybernetic augmentation, a technological renaissance Jacques-Belletete dubbed the "transhuman revolution." The game's protagonist, Adam Jensen, has augmented cybernetic arms that likely give him superhuman strength. Jensen's character model is roughly based off Don Quixote, with a slender face and pointy goatee. Nothing was shared about the plot, but Jacques-Belletete did say the team used the myth of Icarus as inspiration. To show off Jensen's bionic pipes, Eidos Montreal plans to implement a third-person camera during takedowns and a third-person cover system like the one used in Rainbow Six Vegas.

After a laborious trial and error process, Jacques-Belletete's team honed in on a unique hybrid art style that marries traditional cyberpunk conventions with those of the medieval renaissance. The result is a stunning wardrobe of haute couture that wouldn't look out of place on a Parisian runway - think The Tudors meets The Matrix. To avoid the uncomfortable uncanny valley affect created by photorealistic character models, the art team followed a more stylized approach that fits perfectly into the foggy atmosphere and neo-baroque buildings of our not-too-distant future. From the limited gameplay and concept art Jacques-Belletete showed during his speech, it's clear Human Revolution won't have that sterilized feel of many sci-fi games. Like a real city, old rundown tenements stand right alongside the sleek, neon-lit buildings of the future, and advertisements are everywhere. Blending the old with the new results in a much more believable environment.

That's all the gameplay info we gleamed from the enlightening panel, but it's enough to re-energize our excitement for this critical reboot. With over 130 staffers working on the project, let's hope they can capture the magic of the brilliant first game while bringing the franchise into the future.

Be sure to check out the GDC 2010 hub page for quick access to more news and hands-on impressions from the event.