Superfuse ist ein Superheld-Diablo mit Killer-Anpassung

Whether you like it or not, we’re still deep in a golden age of superheroes that shows no signs of slowing. In fact, the video game world is only just now catching up to movies, with big-budget Marvel games coming from studios like Insomniac and Firaxis. Despite that continued growth, it feels like we’re seeing less original superheroes as the industry focuses on adapting existing ones.

Inhalt

  • Stadt der Helden
  • Overpowered
  • Origin story

That’s going to change with Superfuse. The new action RPG from developer Stitch Heads takes the dungeon crawler setup of Diablo and replaces fantasy archetypes with superheroes. While it draws inspiration from darker properties like Invincible and The Boys, it’s a totally original concept that brings games like City of Heroes to mind.

I went hands-on with the game at this year’s Game Developers Conference and was impressed by what the game had to offer. While its dungeon crawling action is familiar, it has an ingenious approach to character builds — one that let me create a truly overpowered superhero that could kick any Avengers’ butt.

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Stadt der Helden

Superfuse isn’t a light superhero romp. It’s a dark game that’s set in a dystopian future destroyed by capitalism. Rich corporate elites have essentially transformed themselves into Gods by augmenting themselves with powers (all while the poor suffer in the streets). Long-story short, monsters emerged, dubbed The Corruption, and the elites decided to fight back by creating superheroes in their own image. Thus, the Enforcers were born.

It’s easy to see that the team drew inspiration from satirical shows like The Boys, though it’s not a pitch-black game. Visually, it reminds me of the Borderlands series with its bright colors and cartoon-like visuals. My first hit of sadistic glee came when I attacked an enemy and bright goo splattered out of it in a geyser-like particle explosion.

Anyone who’s familiar with the Diablo series will feel right at home here. I begin my demo in a hub area, but quickly head out into a procedurally generated series of rooms and hallways filled with enemies. I click on the map to move and attack with different abilities that each have their own power cost. The enemies I smash drop various loot, like armor and weapons, that I can equip in different spots.

Toss in four-player co-op, and you’ve got all the makings of a classic dungeon crawler with a superhero face-lift.

Overpowered

The game really starts to get exciting when it comes to actually creating an Enforcer. Superfuse features five distinct heroes, all of which roughly map to a standard RPG class. In my demo, I played as The Berserker, the equivalent to a heavy-hitting barbarian. The Stitch Heads team didn’t reveal the other classes, but key art hints at a ranger-style class, among others.

Each character has their own skill tree, but it doesn’t work in the way you might expect. Unlocking skills means that players essentially get a module that can be used to augment abilities. The act of customizing a superpower almost feels like programming — and it’s a delightfully powerful tool.

Characters start with basic attacks. My Berserker had a simple projectile blast that shot forward, for instance. As I unlock augments, I can start attaching them using “if/then” statements. For example, if my attack kills an enemy, then they fire out shrapnel when they die. Or I can program it so that when I fire my projectile, it splits into two shots.

Things get wild when I start stacking augments on top of one another. I could split that same shot four ways and then add an augment that mirrors it so I’m shooting projectiles in every direction. I could add elemental damage onto those shots — multiple kinds, if I wanted. The hitch is that the more a player buffs their attacks, the more energy it will cost. Even with that balance, I was still able to make an absurdly powerful build that could squash a small horde of Corrupted in a few button clicks.

It’s one of the most impressive customization systems I’ve seen in a game. Rather than feeling linear or tied to specific gear, character customization feels limitless. My second ability gave me the power to slam enemies and I could have spent a half hour in menus tweaking it to make it as devastating as can be. I experimented with having my character dash forward when he slammed, making little adjustments,and popping back in the game to test how it works in practice.

The developers understand the joy that comes when you create a build that almost feels busted, and they’ve given players a satisfying tool to let them accomplish that.

Origin story

While powers are fully customizable, the characters themselves aren’t blank canvases. This is a narrative-driven game that’s split up into acts, spanning multiple planets and cities. Each hero has a specific backstory and Stitch Heads still wanted to make sure that their personalities weren’t lost in the shuffle.

Der Berserker ist zum Beispiel nicht nur ein generisches Erstellen-A-Charakter. Er ist ein voll ausgelieferter Held von Eli Harris. Bei der Etablierung eines schwarzen Helden (gibt es keine Schieberegler, um seinen Hautton zu ändern), wollten die Stichköpfe sicherstellen, dass es eine Stimme erzeugte, die natürlich fühlte. Das Studio arbeitete eng mit Harris zusammen und erlaubte ihm, dass er seine Input in die Authentik des Charakters verleihen konnte - nicht in der Industrie eine gemeinsame Praxis in der Branche, laut Harris. Der Schauspieler ist besonders begeistert von dem Charakter, da das Studio ihm die Chance gab, individuelle Anpassungen seiner eigenen zu tun.

Nach Jahren des Live-Service-Spiels wie Destiny 2 schätzt ich dieses Detail aufrichtig. Viele moderne Spiele haben Persönlichkeit von Charakteren genommen, indem sie versuchen, sie zu leeren Avataren für Spieler, auf die Sie projizieren können. Superfuse Findet eine bessere Lösung. Es gibt den Spielern die volle Kontrolle, wenn es darum geht, die Aktion anzupassen, aber immer noch eine Besetzung von Helden präsentiert, die sich unterscheiden. Ich möchte die Kontrolle über meine Kräfte haben, aber ich bin immer noch ein Trottel für eine gute, verfassende Ursprungsgeschichte.

Superfuse hat dank seiner tiefen Anpassung und Co-Op-Multiplayer eine Menge Potenzial. Die Entwickler beachten, dass es außerhalb der Hauptkampagne viel Endgame-Inhalte gibt, sodass das Team bereit ist, das Spiel die Unterstützung zu geben, die es überleben muss. Die Spieler können in superfuse ein Werkzeug in superfuse beginnen, wenn er irgendwann in diesem Jahr in den frühen Zugriff startet.

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