What would you do if the world ended? Grab a hammer as big as you are and find out why, of course!
Malice begins after the destruction of the world. Your goal, as Alice, is to find out what caused that destruction, go back in time, and stop it from happening. Although, as in all good games, that promises to only be the tip of the iceberg.
Alice, the heroine of our story, will need to master both magic and such advanced weapons as the Mace of Clubs and the Clockwork Hammer. The hammer, it seems, will be a very important aspect to the game, as it serves several functions. Not only will you use it to squash enemies, but in combination with various elemental magic spells, create different attacks. Since it is the Clockwork Hammer, it will also be the tool used to move back and forth through time.
The magic is represented through five elements. Four of those elements (Earth, Water, Wood, Metal) Alice must control to battle the fifth (Fire) and set the world right again.
And then there is that giant robot. Just when and how you use this mechanized representation of Alice remains to be seen, but any game with a giant robot in it can't be too bad, can it?
Argonaut has created its own engine, which has been in development for over a year. This engine, called Shadowcaster, really seems to highlight the visual power of Xbox. With this engine, Malice will be able to handle multiple light sources and cast realistic shadows.
The one aspect of the game that has yet to be examined is how this all comes together through the gameplay. All of the elements seem to be there, but how they work together and interface with the player remains to be seen.
Malice has been described as everything from a dark comic fairy tale to a time-traveling action platformer. One thing is for sure. These screenshots are beautiful, and with the processing muscle of Xbox, this could truly be one of the crown jewels at launch.
Daniel "Monk" Pelfrey
Didn't include a strapline.