The Ninjabot

E3 Recap: Goliath

Posted on June 19, 2015 at 11:09 am by Stephen Janes

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While at E3, I had the chance to see developer Whalebox Studio’s upcoming title Goliath. A survival game set in a mysterious land, Goliath allows the player to construct and upgrade their very own Goliath robot, which can be used to battle and gather resources in the randomly generated overworld. These Goliaths are imperative as they are the only true way to defend yourself from warring factions, aggressive creatures and even other Goliaths.

Starting with a basic wooden Goliath, there are several ways to upgrade your army of giants. While controlling the main playable character, you can knock down trees, destroy rocks and gather other resources for your inventory. Wooden Goliaths obviously need wood to enhance themselves, so chopping down a forest is a great way to build up your base Goliath and give them more armor, better weapons and so on. Stone and iron Goliaths were also shown off in the demonstration, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.

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Your Goliath will serve as your bodyguard and each type of Goliath has their own perks.

These Goliaths aren’t invulnerable, however. They are susceptible to weather and their surroundings, which adds a unique level of strategy to the game. Each Goliath has their own health and a temperature gauge which plays a huge part in combat. For instance, the stone Goliath would gain a layer of ice armor if he was left in the snow for too long, while the wooden Goliath gained fire damage and resistance in the heat. These elemental variations are different for each Goliath and affect them in different ways. Although not shown, there was also a day and night cycle which I was told would have an affect on some Goliaths and creatures.

While in combat, each Goliath has a ranged attack, a melee attack and a series of special abilities which can be customized to the player’s liking. It is also possible for the main character to excuse him or herself from the Goliath in order to walk around the map and place traps, gather additional resources and more. One advantage of controlling your playable human is they can be ignored by certain enemies, meaning you can sabotage the fight before it even begins. In the boss battle shown, the playable character left several trip mines which caused a huge amount of damage, making it easier for the players Goliath to dispel.

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The playable character won’t survive long without the use of his Goliath assistants.

The most inspiring feature I saw was the constantly generating world that you reside in. There are several different landscapes you can encounter; desert, forest, plains, snow and more. Each of these are randomly generated as you go along. The first fetch quest shown, it took the demonstrator about ten minutes to find where he needed to go and embarrassedly admitted the previous showcase only took about thirty seconds. Playing the game multiple times won’t necessarily result in different adventures since the story is fairly linear, but the landscape and the layout of the map will, which is perfect considering your character is supposed to be lost in this new world they have no knowledge of.

The developers spoke how they wanted the player to feel completely in control and not just have a basic “go here, fight that, bring this there” adventure. The strange world you now inhabit is home to several warring factions, any of which you can side with and assist or sabotage. Although the details as to why everybody is at war and how that affects the story were not discussed, the developers did clarify that every quest has a few different completion methods and their own set of consequences. For example, say one of the factions is looking for a spy in their ranks, you could either turn in the spy to the opposing faction, return the spy to their original faction, let them walk without telling anybody and so on.

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The stone Goliath is more resistant to fire, but the wooden Goliath can use it to his advantage.

Also not shown but discussed was a settlement feature, where you can recruit certain NPCs and even build your own fortress for them to reside. Again, many of the details were scarce since Whalebox didn’t want to share everything just yet, but they did talk how this settlement of yours would house all the GOliaths in your arsenal and could be upgraded to gain better upgrades. I would expect this would also be a great way to gather additional resources or to procure resources that you couldn’t get otherwise.

Goliath also feature a multiplayer aspect, where friends can jump into your campaign and help you along your way, or you can battle each other head on in the arena. Goliath is scheduled to be released in winter 2016 but there is a lot to be excited about at the moment. The game looked great with its unique artstyle and there weren’t any bugs that I noticed for a game still a year away from completion.

Goliath will be released on Steam, Mac and Linux.

Stephen Janes is also co-host of the Pixelated Podcast and occasionally writes for this fabulous site. You can follow his gaming nonsense on Twitter and YouTube.

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