First Impressions: Prepare yourself for a Greek myth adventure...
Greek mythology has been a fertile source for movies, television and games for a long time. Clash of the Titans, God of War, Troy, Jason and the Argonauts and many more have all caught the imaginations of audiences for a time. All of them have also taken plenty of liberties with the authentic myths. On the other hand, independent Greek game developers Track 7 Games are hard at work on Theseis, a game that will stay true to authentic versions of the myths and combine them with a fully 3D adventure game set in modern-day Greece.
Theseis takes place in a world that combines present-day action with the myths of ancient Greece through two playable characters, Andronicos and Pheve Kalogirou. They're both interested in studying the myths and folklore of their native Greece, but they're two very different people, in a Mulder and Scully kind of way. Where Andronicos has built a successful career investigating the supernatural in an effort to debunk it, Pheve studies paranormal phenomenon because she considers it an integral part of everyday reality. Estranged for many years by their opposing viewpoints, they're brought together when their adoptive father, Costas Kalogirou, disappears and is presumed dead during an extended expedition chasing the family obsession in the unexplained. Still grieving their loss, Andronicos and Pheve must put aside their differences and explore the mystery of Costas's death. Their investigation leads them to unearth age-old conspiracies, murders, and a connection to the magic of the ancients.
And this is where the player comes in. Both Andronicos and Pheve will be playable, although it's not clear yet whether certain missions will belong to one character or the other, or if the player will have the choice of controlling each (or both) in any situation. Early demo footage released so far features Andronicos, while screenshots show Pheve in clearly different locations. They will have to team up on some puzzles, though, so they'll definitely be together in some scenes. The fact that the player will control both characters raises some interesting questions, since the devs have hinted at a a romantic interest between the two. The fact that they're legally related raises still more questions in this area, though it's probably important to point out at this point that they aren't biologically related, since they were adopted separately and raised as brother and sister.
Potential Cousin, Cousine situations aside, the game looks like it will combine elements of a platformer with the puzzle-solving traditional to the adventure genre. Like a lot of platformers, it will use a third-person perspective and have the player moving through exotic locales climbing ledges, traversing dangerous paths, and jumping across vertiginous heights. The demo footage so far shows a pretty standard mechanic in that area. The game also promises plenty of action, but interestingly enough, it will not include any gunplay. Instead of the over-the-top violence present in many games, we'll see the drama of a stealth game alongside other kinds of action to keep things exciting. The devs have promised, however, that these elements of the game will be logical extensions from the storyline, meaning that there won't be platforming for the sake of platforming.
Likewise, the puzzles will fit logically in the situations, so we shouldn't see any of those disembodied, abstract puzzles that fill out the play time in many adventure games. The game promises mechanical puzzles and dialog puzzles, and other situational puzzles involving investigation, information gathering, item use, and even magic. Yes, magic. During their investigations of the supernatural, Andronicos and Pheve discover that they possess magical abilities of their own. He has a ?true sight? that reveals the world of the ancients and allows him to interact with it. She has an uncanny knack for deciphering ancient symbols, hieroglyphs and mechanical devices. Each of these abilities figure into solving certain puzzles, but more difficult ones will require using both of the characters' abilities in concert.
One of the coolest elements of the puzzle system mentioned so far is the 3D inventory system. The player will be able to pick up and examine many objects in the game in a full-screen 3D mode. In this mode, it will be possible to rotate the objects and check them for clues and information that can lead to solving the puzzles. It sounds like one of those things that will either be genius or pure frustration. No doubt it will be great to examine some innocuous item and find the key that brings the connection between a slew of other items into focus. It might even save the player from those silly adventure game moments when you pick up an item, and even though you don't know you have anything interesting, the game takes over and drops some clue in your lap as subtly as a load of bricks. On the other hand, if there are too many of those innocuous trinkets, well, a guy could end up checking and re-checking every one of them obsessively.