Wildfire, the first effort of Stealth Bastards studio, is shaping up to be a more chaotic, medieval Gunpoint based on the latest gameplay video.
Yesterday, May 18, almost 10 minutes of raw gameplay footage for Wildfire was released on YouTube. The video demonstrates the game’s stealth, combat, and magic mechanics. Anyone who has played a 2D stealth game in the vein of Gunpoint or Mark of the Ninja will recognize the core concept of Wildfire. Enemies are too tough to realistically fight head-on, so the player character needs to be sneaky.
The key mechanical distinction from other 2D stealth games that Wildfire seems to be going for is an emphasis on distracting enemies using chaos. The game sports interactive and destructible environments so that players can set traps and start fires to distract guards.
Wildfire also differs from other 2D stealth games in terms of setting. So far, most of this type of game tended to fit into contemporary or futuristic backgrounds. Wildfire appears to be going for a medieval fantasy setting. The choice to make the player character a magic user and not an archetypical ranger or rogue is another interesting design choice.
The way the video shows the player rescuing prisoners along with the way that enemies aren’t outright killed shows that Wildfire is leaning more in the direction of Gunpoint than Mark of the Ninja. For those who missed out on Gunpoint, it was one of the earliest examples of the contemporary version of the 2D stealth game. Released in 2013, Gunpoint pioneered the mechanical concepts of fragile player characters coupled with streamlined traversal making for a gameplay experience about avoiding conflict instead of racking up kills. The game’s slightly goofy take on a near-future cyberpunk noir detective story was as refreshing as its gameplay. Wildfire appears to be setting itself up as a more chaotic version of the Gunpoint style. Instead of hacking alarms and laser grids to sneak in undetected players, now climb magic vines, set fires, and crawl through the underbrush.