Project Warlock was a one-man, high school passion project turned professional indie release. It caught my eye for its distinctive art style, fast-paced and violent gunplay, great soundtrack, and low price point. It started life on PC but eventually received several solid console ports for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch.
It may not have enhanced or redefined the genre in any way – especially with a warlock protagonist that possessed an underwhelming selection of spells – but the solid foundations drew on elements of DOOM, Hexen, Blood, and even a bit of Serious Sam. The result was a solid single-player focused retro-FPS. Light on narrative, heavy on gunplay and secret hunting.
At the E3 PC Gaming Show, we finally got an official reveal and gameplay trailer for the sequel, Project Warlock II. Picking up directly after the first game, Project Warlock II follows three disciples of the first game’s Warlock. They’ve each got their one magical discipline and reasons to confront their old master (if you’ve completed the first game, you’ll know where this is going).
You’ll play as Palmer, Urd, and Kirsten, who each have their own massive act, unique spells, weapons, and enemies to destroy. There are only six levels per episode, but these are now 5-10 times the size of those in the first game, with way more visual diversity, verticality, platforming, and dozens of secrets to find. If this sounds daunting – and you’re having flashbacks to the lives system and lack of mid-mission saves in the first game – you can now save anywhere.
There’s only a vague 2022 release date given at the moment, but Project Warlock II is coming to Steam Early Access on July 29 (and possibly as an “In Development” title on GOG?). If this trailer has caught your attention, the first game is frequently discounted – despite already offering a ton of quality content at a low price – and well worth a look if you want to get a feel for the gameplay.