Developed by Starbreeze studios, the developers of 2004’s Chronicles of Riddick comes The Darkness. Based on the Top Cow comic. The comic follows the man, Jackie Estacado, a mob assassin who, while working, acquires a load of black-magic powers, eventually known as “The Darkness.”

The Darkness focuses on a man, Jackie Estacado a hitman who becomes engaged in a brutal, yet bloody feud with his uncle. Jackie, being possessed with a force, called The Darkness which allows many neat, yet disturbing demonic powers. Although, there is one small catch. The powers that Jackie beholds can only be used when in the darkness (i.e. night time, or dark areas of the video game) basically being immersed in darkness is the only time Jackie is allowed to use these demonic powers. Say for instance, if Jackie was roaming around during the day and some bum off the street decides to fight you, your limited to basic weapons such as your fist, pistols, and other firearms. Different from Chronicles of Riddick, The Darkness is not stealth based. So you will not be sneaking around corners, knocking out lights so that no one can see you or anything like that, you will be doing so in order to immerse yourself in darkness so that your character can use “The Darkness” or in other words, your demonic powers. Demonic powers include a giant tentacle looking object called the “Demonic Arm” that allows your character to pick up very large objects; others such as the creeping dark, that allows your character to project yourself ahead of your body to, in a way, alter the environment; and another being a power that will suck every, and I mean every object in an area, including people into it before closing itself again.

After reading up on some information about The Darkness, I came to realize that during the demo, information came about that there were around 10 different types of darklings (evil beings that, when commanded, will kill). Each darklings have their very own special abilities. For example some may act as a kamakazie-type darkling, which when commanded will fling itself at enemies to take them out. Others include a light killing darkling whitch, when commanded takes out the light source so that Jackie may use his powers more freely. Most darklings will be gained during the storyline but, after reading up I came to learn that by killing special characters or enemies and eating them, you will now have the ability to gain new powers. Sick, twisted, yes? But very cool.

Starbreeze plans to incorporate multiplayer into The Darkness, although the Xbox Live gameplay wont allow you to play as jackie, but as various darklings that you will see in the storyline. Minimal details were given, but as far as we know the multiplayer supports up to 16 players.

Other neat and interesting additions to the game are the in-game television system that allows you to play full motion, lengthy video clips on sets that your allowed to change the channel on.

With the release date being set as April 2nd, 2007 (according to GameSpot). 360Monster and I are definitely looking forward to this game. After the hit Chronicles of Riddick, I am very eager, anxious and excited to play, experience and indulge myself into The Darkness. From the extroadinary sounds of the gameplay to all the special abiliites, encounters, in game experiences, etc… The Darkness looks to be a hit. Environments in The Darkness are highly destructable and players will be progressing through the game in both First Person and 3rd Person. According to 2K, The Darkness will run at 30 frames per second in-game and 60 frames per second during cut-scenes with no noticeable performance differences between the Xbox 360 and the Playstation 3. Some may ask about the HUD, well developer Starbreeze is aiming to have as little HUD as possible. In the demo there werent any guages, mini-maps, counters, etc.. instead when Jackie is hurt his POV flashes a red, bloody damage map similar to that of the Call of Duty franchise. The status of your demonic arm are shown through the intensity of the brightness in your tentacles eyes.

2k also has two special goals in place for The Darkness. Goal number 1 being that The Darkness is much longer than Chronicles of Riddick(the adventure in The Darkness should be double the length of that in Butcher Bay). Goal number 2 is to incorporate “cool” multiplayer modes. With much potential, The Darkness looks to be far from mediocre. As development continues, more information will be released, and you can bet your bottom dollar… 360Monster has you covered. As new information about The Darkness arises, we’ll keep you informed.

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