The intense story setting in Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone will highlight the game's use of an enhanced version of Stormfront's powerful game engine, allowing for greatly improved graphics, faster gameplay and even more intelligent enemies. Scheduled for release in the fall of 2004, Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone will push action adventure on the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system to an entirely new level.
"The work that Stormfront Studios have done in the past, most recently the acclaimed and highly successful The Lord of the RingsTM: The Two TowersTM, showed that they were the perfect team to bring all the action and intensity of the D&D® universe to the PlayStation 2," said Martin Spiess, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Atari Europe. "Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone is a fantastic looking game, offering an incredible gameplay experience made possible by a vastly improved gaming engine and innovative gameplay features. The ability to switch between characters while in the middle of intense action is a first for an action adventure game of this kind, adding a completely new dimension to the gameplay."
In Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone, the player directs a party of three characters – Fighter, Sorcerer and Rogue. The player controls one party member at a time - switching between them on the fly - while the other party members are controlled by the engine's sophisticated artificial intelligence. For example, when the player controls the Fighter, the Sorcerer and Rogue will continue to engage in combat, cast spells and assist the player in defeating all challengers. In many situations, the characters will be able to divide and conquer difficult objectives – while the Fighter holds back a horde of Yuan-Ti snakemen with brute force, the Sorcerer supports him with devastating ranged magic while the rogue sneaks above and behind them for a coup de grace. The player participates seamlessly in each critical moment as they are cinematically switched from one perspective to another.
This real-time, on-the-fly character switching design allows Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone to challenge players with innovative and compelling encounters. In true D&D fashion, each of the characters excels at a certain type of gameplay. The Fighter thrives in melee combat, the Sorcerer is excellent at ranged and magical combat and the Rogue excels at jumping, sneaking and disarming traps. Players will be continually tasked with choosing the best character for each challenge as well as using each character's gameplay specialty to maximum effect.
"Console action game fans will be blown away by the depth and beauty of Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone," said Don Daglow, president of Stormfront Studios. "The technology improvements, the fantastic gaming universe of D&D's Forgotten Realms, and the wide variety of exciting cinematic gameplay all add up to one thing – a fun and compelling action-adventure."
Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone will utilise an extensive fighting system which is both easy to learn and visually stunning. Characters will perform amazing attacks and feats at the simple touch of a button, but the system has sophisticated features for advanced players who want to tailor their attacks to maximize their damage in specific situations. Unique special attacks, combinations, linked combos, super attacks and even group super attacks allow advanced players to excel against their most fearsome foes.
In addition, Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone will allow players to upgrade their characters with a branching path of new feats and combos as they gain experience and levels. Each character will feature a number of unique abilities, such as the Fighter's combat skills and strength, the Rogue's stealth and lock picking abilities and the Sorcerer's plethora of new spells. For example, when upgrading the Fighter, the player might have the choice of upgrading his Strength, his Melee Skill or his Hand-to-Hand skill. Within those choices, there will be other dependencies, such as the requirement to earn Power Attack before Cleave can be acquired.
Demon Stone's intense, cinematic action is set entirely within the visually stunning Forgotten Realms fantasy world. Familiar characters, such as the famous drow Drizzt Do'Urden? and the legendary mage Khelban "Blackstaff" Arunsun; terrifying monsters, including Dragons, Orcs, Slaadi, Yuan-Ti and Trolls; as well as geographical locations straight from the popular D&D campaign setting will make appearances and serve as backdrops throughout the game. The story of Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone revolves around the adventuring party's unwitting intrusion into an age-old conflict between two warring demonic armies; one led by a Githyanki Princess and, the other, a Slaad Lord. After inadvertently releasing both demons back upon the world after eons of imprisonment, it becomes the adventurer's quest to right their wrong and restore order to the world of Faerun.
Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone is scheduled for release in the autumn of 2004.
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