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Knightfall
Knightfall cover
Developer(s) DECA UK
Publisher(s) NINE100 Studios
Engine ICEngine
Genre(s) Open World Action RPG
"It's hard to remember how life used to be before the world changed. They say this is the modern age. A blaze of ashes remains of a distant past, one without the chaos and violence we've found ourselves in now. Eras of interweaving houses by blood couldn't save us from this apocalypse. Our men will form the armies who will fight and die in name of the unworthy, getting no step closer to seeing the end. We can't stand by and let this war go on forever. The Knighthood will prevail. And I shall lead the way."
―James Grey in the "Balance of Power" Trailer

Knightfall, internally referred to as Project: Templar, is an Open World Action Role-playing Game developed by DECA UK and published by NINE100 Studios as an Anima 2 launch title. It showcases the next-generation capabilities by creating a massive open world sandbox and high graphical fidelity, utilizing the power of the Anima 2 in conjuction with the ICEngine.

DevelopmentEdit

After the completion of Dark Half 2, the team at DECA UK went on to evaluate possibilities of another Dark Half game. Many ideas were put forward, but due to the departure of lead narrative designers, Christ Kent and Jake Moran, who went on to create Fanatik Games, the team decided that the ideas for another Dark Half game wouldn't fit the series.

At that time, the new ICEngine was in its final stages of development at DECA USA. DECA UK was planning on creating a tech demo for an open world game, rendering a large sandbox that utilized seamless rendering, which was promising regarding DECA UK's expertise with open world game design. The demo was put forward to NCS executives in 2018, who approached DECA UK with developing a game for the higher-powered upcoming console, which was in early development at that time. To succesfully realize the scale of the project, DECA UK provided feedback regarding the specs of the then in development Anima 2.

Knightfall is available in a special edition Anima 2 bundle alongside the Anima Iris and Darkest Harvest. A special add-on mode was developed specifically for the Anima Iris. 

PremiseEdit

The story of Knightfall takes place in alternate timeline where Europe has advanced earlier into industrialization. The catalyst of this is an entity known as the artifact, an ambiguous object that has been said to help the Egyptians understand science and math and help with building the pyramids. Jesus of Nazareth rose to power through the use of the artifact, until he was taken down by the Jewish society before he could do more harm according to them.

After that, the artifact disappeared from the face of the world for centuries. However, during the Crusades the Knights Templar had alledgedly found the artifact and used it to strengthen their society, eventually conquering the entirety of Levant. Their prominence eventually caused the Templar Knighthood to slowly take over parts of europe, seizing control of reigning monarchs from the inside and bend them to the will of the Knights Templar.

Due to the advanced knowledge the Knights Templar possesed and through peacefull cooperation between all European houses, science and enlightenment flourished and caused prosperity throughout the entiry of Europe and Mesopotamia. Throughout the ages, each region slowly develops an own identity and Knighthoods combine to form larger societies, eventually forming 4 major Knighthoods, the British, French, Russian and Levantine Knighthood respectively, who went on to dictate the timeline.

GameplayEdit

Knightfall is an action role-playing game played from the third-person perspective. The game is designed to be a powerhouse launch title of the Anima 2 console, with a focus on high graphical fidelity, a huge and lively open world and cinematic direction in storytelling, while also offering an enjoyable and engaging gameplay experience. 

Main article: Knightfall/Combat

The player takes the control of a young Knight, trained soldiers in both the art of ranged and close combat. Combat exists thus out of ranged combat through rifles and other exotic weaponry and close quarter combat through the use of blades, hatchets and the Knight's exclusive classical sword and gauntlet. The control scheme offers the player to quickly swap between both modes and weapons to allow fluid combat at all times where the player is in control and always has an ace up the sleave, wether he is rushed by a bayonet charger or has the option to quickly dispatch people from afar.  

The open world of Knightfall is a massive open world render of various chunks of Europe, which are connected by seamless fast travel zones to tighten the map. Players can travel to major European metropoles, like London, Paris and Moscow, and to the 2 major warfronts, the Western and Eastern front on the left and right side of Germany with a countryside in between connecting the fronts. The fast travel zones are specifically designed to have players quickly arrive to different districts without the need of a loading screen or lose control of the character. Each major city has unique vendors selling items or weapon upgrades, making it worth visiting different locations.

The main hub for the player is the Anglican Knighthood's headquarter in London, while the whole city in itself is the central location of the game. The player has access to a variety of services, including vendors, the blacksmith and his Gunwall. The blacksmith can be used to reforge collected weapons in a minigame-like fashion using specially bought runes, while the Gunwall is Grey's collection of guns that he can equip without it being lost when dropped, as well as retaining the stats. It is a large wall on the side of his room and the player can look at it and select what he wants as his current loadout.

The depths of London are also very rich and detailed, with tons of character interaction and black markets, offering a Metroidvania-like experience exploring the city for secret items or suspicious activity. Whitechapel has transformed into a  deprived area and can't be entered without special warrants or contracts. These can be gained by exploring London and interrogating black market vendors or other people and once gained enough information, the player can start a raid mission, an open ended, mostly stealth, mission where the player has to kill or capture targets and/or disrupt illegal activity. The difficulty of raids is high and there can't be any mistake, otherwise the mission fails and the contract is lost. Completing a raid offers unique and valuable rewards. 

The main Campaign missions can be selected from a seperate menu to fast travel to the intended location or players can travel manually to that location and it will automatically start. Besides main campaign missions, there are various activities in different parts of the world. At both the warfronts, dynamic events take place that players can participate in for experience, ability upgrades or passive buffs to the army to easen future missions. Dynamic events include assassinating targets, capturing locations, destroying war machines or stopping a wave push of enemies. Through these events, the frontline changes it's current location, sometimes hindering the path through it to get to the other side of it or making Campaign missions in the frontline more difficult if it's pushed to far into allied territory. The frontline is influenced, not dictated, by engaging in these events, giving the player some control of it. 

The mechanics of the game are designed with hardcore RPG elements in mind, but not sacrificing versatility. The game features in-depth randomly generated stats for weapons on the battlefield, as well as exotic weapons and other items that sort of fill up the slot of spells and special attacks. There are also a diverse set of status effects that can be inflicted onto enemies and onto the player, like the Bleed and Burn status, damage over time with side effects, caused by firearms and other weapons and the Intimidate status, lowering enemies' guard in melee combat, caused by swordplay. If inflicted onto the player, it is advised to take care of this through medicine or other items.

ChaptersEdit

There are a total of 16 Chapters with each chapter containing multiple Missions. 

FactionsEdit

LocationsEdit

Weapons and EquipmentEdit

Main article: Knightfall/Weapons

TalentsEdit

Talents are the way of upgrading your character. You level your character up, complete side missions or through story rewards, you earn specific tokens to upgrade abilities.

Abilities have to be unlocked by training, which means performing a task which opens the ability to be unlocked with a token. You can train abilities in training sessions or in combat, which gives more experience per performance. Each ability has 5 levels, with each upgrade increasing the ability's effectiveness.

Besides abilities, there are masteries, which are unlocked the same way, but only have 1 level, meaning it can't be upgrade. Masteries are outlined in Italic, while activation masteries are also Bold.

  • Ferocity - Symbol of the Soldier: Offensive abilities, enhanced combat handling and DPS upgrades.
    • Unyielding: Increased armor amount. Unlocked from the start.
    • Steadfast: Decreased gunfire kick.
    • Fury: Increased small arms handling. 
    • Vampirism: Dealing damage increases health.
    • Piercer: Negate a portion of heavy armor.
    • Critical Blow: Increased chance of critical hit and causing a bleeding. 
    • Stacked: Carry more ammunition for your loadout.
    • Determined: After losing all health have a second chance to revive instantly.
    • Reckoning: Used abilities recharge faster.
    • Focus: Slow down time to land precision shots in quick succession.
  • Elegance - Symbol of the Knight: Variety of offensive and defensive skills focusing on honor and tradition.
    • Wanderer: Increased movement speed. Unlocked from the start. 
    • Swordsman: Increased melee damage.
    • Assassin: Close quarter executions are faster.
    • Bladecaster: Ability to draw and put away your melee weapon in swift intervals.
    • Veil: Increased unnoticability on the field. 
    • Dodge: Ability to dodge attacks and bullets.
    • Artist: Higher chance of intimidating.
    • Punisher: Execute enemies after a deflect or parry.
    • Fervor: Increased offensive stats when outnumbered. 
    • Champion: Faster and more effective chain of melee attacks.
  • Cunning - Symbol of the Inventor: Adaptive abilities, survivability and specialization with technological crafts.
    • Recovery: Recover health faster. Unlocked from the start. 
    • Medical: Resolve status effects faster.
    • Looter: Enemy bodies are faster looted from ammunition and currency.
    • Insight: Weapon familiarity rate is increased.
    • Strategist: Allies will have better offenses near you.
    • Blacksmith: Rune forges have higher chance of succeeding.
    • Phantom: Increased invisibility while in stealth mode.
    • Adaptability: Improvise with enemy weapons during a chain attack.
    • Crippling: Status effects do increased effect for a longer duration.
    • Feign: Pretend to be dead to surprise enemies later.

Diaries of WarEdit

Diaries of War are a series of interactive collectables optimized for the Anima Iris VR headset. They are first-person perspectives from varying people in the war and serve as a cinematic and immersive experience with some minor gameplay-esque interactions and free-roaming. The goal of the diaries is to deliver an "unprecedented war experience no other medium has been able to deliver before" and to portray realistic fears and tenseness present in wars in general. They are unlocked by completing Chapters.

GalleryEdit

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