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|Ryse: Son of Rome|
|Genre(s)||Hack and slash, action-adventure|
|Ryse: Son of Rome|
|Genre(s)||Hack and slash, action-adventure|
The gameplay is based on the control of a Roman general named Marius Titus. Players work with Roman infantry by giving commands to them as well as quick time event controlled finishing moves during combat on the easiest difficulty. Beyond this, gameplay consists of using strong block moves to break enemy combos and execution kills. While the historical component is highly inaccurate, it takes place in an alternate time-line and the developers claim to have drawn much of the inspiration for the game's combat and tactics from "...the innumerable Roman campaigns that led to the [modern] concept of total war". The story follows Marius' life from early childhood to becoming a leader in the Roman Army. The story is described as "an epic tale of revenge spanning an entire lifetime". Fifteen hero level characters were given full motion capture with the same detail as Marius. Players control Marius using the controller, while simultaneously controlling his legion through Kinect voice commands.
Ryse: Son of Rome tells the story of the young Roman soldier Marius Titus who witnesses the murder of his family at the hands of barbarian bandits. The story begins with him repelling a barbarian invasion of Rome and rescuing the emperor, Nero. Marius walks with Nero to a secret chamber, where he discusses his past while Nero listens to him intently.
Marius begins his story off as a soldier serving in the relatively peaceful 2nd Legion, holding a post in Alexandria, returning to his family in Rome. However, his peaceful visit is cut short as a Barbarian invasion takes place, resulting in the death of Marius' mother and sister. Swearing revenge, he aids his father in killing several more barbarian soldiers before Marius' father is ultimately killed by a Barbarian soldier. Devastated, he is witnessed by Vitallion, a friend of his murdered father. Vitallion transfers Marius to the 14th legion, who promises Marius to avenge his murdered family. As time passes on, Vitallion leads Marius to a Barbarian territory offshore, where Marius successfully leads a Roman invasion by boat, a feat that impresses Vitallion so much that it prompts him to promote Marius to Centurion.
Another invasion lead by Marius against York in hopes of capturing King Oswald and his daughter Boudica for betraying the emperor is successful, despite numerous casualities. Upon capturing Oswald and Boudica, Basillius, who reveals that his brother, Commodus was taken away by the Barbarians to an unknown location. Basillius mocks and intimidates King Oswald into revealing his whereabouts, and Oswald reveals that they took him to a particular location where allegedly few people have returned upon going there. Basillius then tasks Vitallion and Marius to go to the location and bring back Commodus. The trip is successful, but Vitallion is taken hostage by masked bandits and Marius is knocked off a cliff. Marius eventually makes his way up, killing the Minotaur leader in a brutal fight and rescues Commodus and Vitallion.
Commodus returns back to York with Basilius and Vitallion, where he continues to intimidate Oswald. Although Commodus seemingly forgives Oswald for his treachery, he later murders him in a fit of rage. Through observing Commodus' conversation, Marius soon realizes that it wasn't the Barbarians that murdered his family; It was the work of the emperor Nero himself. A long, brutal and bloody battle against York takes place, and while he instructs Vitallion to move on without him at the end, Marius is knocked off a bridge by Barbarians and falls into the ocean, a fall he survives. Realizing that the emperor murdered his family, Marius makes his way back to Rome in hopes of murdering Nero.
Upon killing several Pretorians, Marius later assumes the identity of "Damocles" in order to confront Basillius and Commodus for their wrongdoing. Marius attempts to convince Basillius to let him enter the arena, but Basillius has him fight several dangerous enemies to allow him to enter. Although Marius survives all fights, he makes his way down and kills Basillius. After making his way through the arena and surviving more further difficult challenges, Marius confronts Commodus, stabbing his heart and decapitating him, a feat that greatly enrages Nero. After exiting, he later meets up with Vitallion who discusses with him about an impending invasion by the Barbarian army. He later instructs Marius to fight alongside the invasion whilst finding a way to murder the emperor. Much of the efforts to fend against the invasion are successful, but Vitallion is utlimately killed by Boudica. Enraged by another loss, Marius confronts her and decapitates her.
The story is then cut back to the present day. Nero, realizing that Marius murdered his sons and is now after him, runs away and instructs his guards to take down Marius. After a lengthy chase, Marius is fatally stabbed by Nero. Dying and losing energy, Marius fights through several Praetorians, and in his last breath, jumps with Nero off a balcony where he throws Nero on the sword of a statue, slicing him brutally, while Marius bears the full impact of the fall and dies.
The story ends with the Barbarians retreating from Rome, and Marius being posthumously hailed as a hero for his efforts to fend off the attacks against Rome.
Ryse: Son of Rome was originally revealed as Codename: Kingdoms during Microsoft's E3 2010 press conference, along with the announcement that the game was being developed by Crytek. During the Microsoft Press Conference at E3 2011, Rise was announced among other Xbox 360 exclusive titles however as a Kinect only title. The announcement entailed a pre-rendered trailer with minor gameplay footage.
In June 2012, Phil Spencer, corporate VP of Microsoft Studios, maintained that the game was still in development. When asked whether it was still a Kinect game, Spencer replied "Kinect will be part of the game, absolutely", leading to speculation that it was no longer a Kinect-only game, and was instead part of the "Better with Kinect" series of Xbox 360 games.
In May 2013, after the announcement of the Xbox One, Ryse was confirmed to be an exclusive for the new console. In June 2013 at the E3 Microsoft Conference, Crytek showed a gameplay video. Kinect is no longer part of the active combat but has a diminished role by providing squad commands through speech and gesture.
Ryse: Son of Rome has received mixed reviews from critics. It currently holds a score of 60 on Metacritic. Electronic Gaming Monthly praised the visuals but critiqued the repetitive combat and gave Ryse a score of 7.5/10. GameSpot was more critical of the game, however, noting the great visuals and vocal performances, but knocking the "shallow and repetitive combat", linear path, and multiplayer, scoring a 4/10. Hex from Good Game gave the game 8.5/10 saying that "the voice acting and mocap is all top-notch, with beautiful, stately dialogue".
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