by William Thompson
previewed on PC
Gaming can be hell sometimes
Diabolique: Licence to Sin is a single player third-person shooter based on the premise that there is a continual fight between good and evil, and that the team from up above is winning. The gamer plays the role of Dark Eaville, an agent from Hell, in an effort to try and even things up a little. To do so, he must shoot, sneak around, drive his sports car and do all sort of Evil tasks in an effort to stop Heaven's agents.
What does the Devil look like?
From what we've seen, graphically Diabolique looks very promising. The locations are well rendered, and given that the story has a sinister feeling to it, the colours tend to be the darker shades, further enhancing the 'evil' sensation. Settings include the standard factories and the tight-space corridors of sewers, but as you might expect of someone who is out to destroy the angels of Heaven, there are also churches and medieval castles. Much of the locations have a similar ambience to the 'Tomb Raider' series, giving the impression that Dark Eaville could be a male version of the ever-popular Lara Croft. This is more evident due to the fact that both games have the third-person perspective.
The forces of Eaville
First off, Dark Eaville has only his fists with which to fight, but as he progresses, he is able to equip himself with more firepower. The usual weapons are available including pistols, grenades, rifles and he can also collect items such as binoculars and other spy gadgets. The thing that separates this game from other games in the genre is Dark's ability to turn himself into a ghost-like creature and feed off the defeated souls of his enemies.
I suppose that this could be a substitute for medikits from the standard shooters. But not only does this ghost-ish appearance feed Dark, but by using certain items of his inventory, he can do different tasks. An example is that he can use night-vision goggles in his devilish state to see who is an angel and who is just an ordinary human.
The bad guys (or should that be good guys)
There seems to be a large amount of monks in the game, but that could be due to the fact that Dark is fighting on the side of the Prince of Darkness. These are not ordinary monks though, and should put up a decent fight. Other than the fighting monks (No, they are not the Shaolin monks from Tibet), there are a host of other angelic enemies that Dark must combat. The AI is supposed to be advanced, but we'll have to wait to see how advanced. The behaviour of the enemies will be influenced by their numbers. A group of 2 will be more cautious than a group of 5 or 6. Enemies will also be able to use the scenery to hide when they have the option or need.
Heaven or Hell?
With the appealing graphics, the reputed advanced AI, the ability to drive around in a TPS and the devilish abilities of Dark Eaville, Diabolique could definitely be worth a look. We'll keep an eye out to see how this game continues to develop. Diabolique: Licence to Sin is scheduled for release in the first quarter of 2006.