Eidos has confirmed that Deus Ex 3 is a prequel and features biological augmentations, a cover-based stealth system and customisable and upgradeable weaponry.
Speaking to PC Zone in a long-awaited preview, Eidos Montreal explained that the game is set in 2027, and that players take on the role of a private security officer called Adam Jensen at a lab specialising in biomods. Jensen's life gets interesting when black ops break into his work.
Clarifying the preview's contents, Eidos Montreal's community manager told Voodoo Extreme that the game is a "hybrid/action RPG just like the first game", and that, "There is a skill system where you upgrade your character (Adam) based off experience points you earn and you can do the same thing with weapons."
The unnamed community manager felt the need to point this out after fans went a bit potty about some of the preview's contents. Apart from the cover-based stealth system, which replaces stealth based on light and shadow, there's an auto-healing system a bit like Call of Duty's or Halo's shield, and weapons skill rather than statistics will be central to combat.
Eidos also said that players would not be limited to a single ammo type, and that weapons can be modified with scopes and mag upgrades amongst other things.
As for augmentations, the prequel still has 'em, and they include one that fires bungee cord-style tentacles out of your back to stop you plummeting to your death when you jump off a building, and one that allows you to punch through walls to reach enemies next door.
In broader terms, "The gameplay takes the form of a consequence-driven multi-path, multi-solution approach in a non-linear space," according to the Eidos chap who emailed Voodoo Extreme.
There was less specific information on how other RPG-style elements will work, but Eidos has previously said that it will keep faith with the first game's principles. "I think the dialogue, choice versus consequences, the depth and richness of the game is something that we will certainly conserve. There are other more specific features that we want to keep," Eidos Montreal general manager Stephane D'Astous noted last year.
Deus Ex 3 - announced almost a year ago - is thought to be in development for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360, and will use the same technology Crystal Dynamics did for Tomb Raider: Legend. Be sure to check out the original Deus Ex 3 teaser trailer to get an even vaguer sense of it all.