Darksiders: Wrath of War

Revelations not revolutions.

If we made a game, we'd definitely base it on Revelations. "And there went forth a horse that was Red," booms the Darksiders THQ Gamers Day trailer. Yeah. "And power was given to him that sat thereon, to take peace from the Earth." Yeah. "And there was given unto him a great sword." Yeah. And a funny suit, as you will know if you watched to the end of the fairly nondescript teaser. If anything, he's a bit like George Clooney in Batman.

Still, when you think about it - or, rather, when you look at this table on Wikipedia - the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are brilliant videogame fodder. Each has a different coloured horse, each has special powers, each has a stupid name. Vigil Games, creating third-person action-adventure Darksiders: Wrath of War, evidently arrived at the view that the Pestilence, Famine and Death were a bit boring, though, so this one's about War, who rides a red horse, has a sword, and does "War" and "Violence".

He certainly does. His sword, which looks a bit like the top of a Super Star Destroyer, can be used to duff up enemies in traditional alternating slash combos, uppercuts and juggles, interspersed with Devil May Cry-style projectile attacks from fiery weapons and guns borrowed from the fictional bit of a post-apocalyptic Earth you start the game on. Unwilling to be constrained by the vagaries of guns and ammo, War can also pluck just about anything from the environment and, ungh, weaponise it - school buses, lamp posts, you name it. "A badger." You can't use a badger. In the absence of a proper hands-on - sadly Vigil kept firm hold of the 360 demo's pad - the subtleties of the combat system weren't immediately apparent, but there was very obviously a lot of flexibility, and a combo meter to keep up with your brutalising.

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Is this what church is like? We might start going.

The game is apparently split between an unidentified American-looking city, full of skyscrapers with chunks torn out of them and skewed at odd angles on the horizon, and the Abyss, which is supposed to be Hell-like. We saw the former - a gathering of deserted and decrepit streets under a dark sky, where War was able to batter various emaciated humanoid demons. Vigil explained that the world was home to a lot of scripted encounters, and on cue a hulking red boss with talon-like claws and massive, Gizmo-out-of-Gremlins fuzzy ears (or possibly horns) leapt forth from a nearby rooftop, slashing away at War and roaring through his Rancor mouth (we do hope Lucas is getting royalties), until War leapt up, chopped his arms off at the elbows and smacked him in the head. All this killing helps War harvest souls, which he needs to spend on upgrades. Just like in the Bible.

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