Alone in the Dark: Illumination
Today at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, California, I checked out Atari and Pure FPS’s upcoming sequel to the long-running Alone in the Dark series. We’ve already dived into the basics of this third-person, Left 4 Dead-style co-op game, so let’s dig in more on the illuminating gunplay.
Alone in the Dark: Illumination treats the series’ title more literally than most entries in the franchise. Terrible things begin happening in a small Virginia town after a cult summons monsters that are rendered immortal in the darkness. This is where things start to take a page (wink) from Alan Wake’s playbook. The Hunter paranormal investigator player class has a flashlight attached to his assault rifle, which makes the Lovecraftian monsters vulnerable to his volley of bullets. He also has a handy flamethrower attached to his gun, which doubles as a bright light source and devastating assault.
The Hunter class is joined by three others, all of which focus on weakening enemies with various forms of light. The Witch uses her magical powers to blast creatures with lightning. The Priest glows with God’s holy light, allowing his to banish the abominations. Finally, the Engineer class can lay down Bouncing Betty-style mines that, when triggered, jump into the air and explode with light and shrapnel.
Being able to effectively work together (single-player is available, too), enables the team of four to work through each of the three campaign’s four levels effectively. Some level objectives also revolve around the theme of light. For example, at one point the players need to power a generator which will activate an elevator down to the mysterious, abandoned mines. The players must hunt down power cables and tether them from the generator to a tall lightning rod. When a bolt of electricity hits this metal pole, the energy tendrils arc outwards towards all nearby enemies, handily eliminating the pests.
I didn’t get to play Illumination, but I’m intrigued by the integration of light into the combat. Alan Wake and Left 4 Dead are two of my favorite horror games, and a new title that combines these elements has promise. It launches this spring on PC at the price of $29.99.