Atlus’s Cursed Crusade Aims a Crossbow at Demon’s Souls

Atlus might not have control of a Demon’s Souls sequel, but hopefully Cursed Crusade can imitate its success.

A second and proper trailer for Atlus’s Cursed Crusade gives us a better look at the upcoming game that is likely meant to follow up on the success of Demon’s Souls. Cursed Crusade looks very similar to Demon’s Souls with its aesthetics, but has a totally different premise.

Due to some IP wrangling, From Software isn’t developing Demon’s Souls 2, but is working on a spiritual sequel to Demon’s Souls with Namco Bandai called Project Dark. Atlus may have been cut out of the loop, but that doesn’t mean it won’t have a dark, medieval third-person action title to release in 2011.

Cursed Crusade gives its main character more of a story this time, and plants him in the realistic setting of Old World western Europe. Actually, I should say characters, because Cursed Crusade features both split-screen and online co-op for its missions.

Players will take on the role of Denz, a holy Templar, with roguish mercenary Esteban playable as a co-op character. Atlus says the duo are trying to “find the means to deliver themselves from a terrible curse that threatens to consume their immortal souls.” Okay, maybe it isn’t that different from Demon’s Souls after all.

This particular trailer shows off some of the locations Denz will visit, chopping and hacking through his foes along the way. The combat system features over 90 combos, a timing-based counter system, and more than 130 weapons such as dual swords, maces, and spears you stab in one end and pull out the other. If some of these moves are initiated in real-time, particularly the part where Denz stabs an enemy, smashes him with his shield, and then twirls his sword before stabbing him again on the ground, it looks like it’ll be pretty damn exciting.

Cursed Crusade is based on the fourth crusade of the early 1200s, where a group of crusaders were enlisted to go to the city of Zara but were distracted by the lure of Constantinople instead. Distractions in this Atlus game evidently lead to some devilish things, with Denz shown at the very end of the trailer transformed, sporting horns and using some very badass demonic abilities. Players can transform the world into a “vision of Hell,” which increases strength and reveals hidden things, but siphons away Denz’s humanity.

The first look Atlus gave us of Cursed Crusade made me say: “Hey, neat.” After this one, I’m thinking Demon’s Souls fans truly have something new to look forward to from Atlus in 2011. Cursed Crusade is planned for release in summer on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC.

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