It isn’t very often that you get the chance to make a first impression. As part of our ongoing series of gameplay reveals for EA’s upcoming action/RPG Anthem, we were able to get hands-on with the game during the introduction of Dominion faction leader, The Monitor. While his influence over the campaign is still unknown at this point, he certainly looks to be a key figure in the early narrative. Regardless of how much screen time he ultimately receives in the final game, in our hands-on footage he looks to be an unadulterated badass.
So let’s take a little time to dive below the surface to see what else we can learn about this soft-spoken super soldier as seen in our hands-on gameplay.
He’s Very Level-Headed
He has the enemy right where he wants them. Sure, he could let his trooper try and beat the information out of the poor sap. However, he knows that it’s going to take more than an ass-whipping to get what he wants from the prisoner. Instead, he opts to negotiate in hopes that a fiscal incentive might be more productive that the business end of a blaster.
In that “blink and you miss it” moment, the person being interrogated waivers from her initial statement to the shocktrooper. Originally she claimed knowing nothing about any sort relic. While attempting to bribe her, the captive now states that the relic isn’t for sale, which directly conflicts with her earlier statement.
This is a point that he very quickly notes and calls attention to. It was a small detail that completely turns the course of the conversation. He managed to accomplish this without ever even asking the prisoner a single question. This is far from his first rodeo.
He’s a Teacher
This entire time, The Monitor has been explaining his logic verbally, for all to hear. While you might chalk that up to a typical villain storytelling trope manifesting itself once again, when you look at it in the larger context of the scene, this might not be the only reason for his seemingly excessive commentary.
He’s just stopped one of his troopers from beating the bejesus out of this poor bastard, and even scolded him for not operating like they are taught. Then, without missing a beat he is able to extract the information he needs, all the while calling out exactly what he is doing and why he is doing it.
Simply put, he is trying to actively teach the wayward trooper how to conduct an interrogation more productively. So not only is he smart, he is trying to make all of his subordinates better at their jobs as well.
Dude’s Got Some Badass Powers
I don’t know what exactly he was shooting out of his hands, but I think we can all agree that it wasn’t going to end well for that poor recipient. From what I can tell it looked like some kind of lightning shot out of his hands. However, the bolt seems to lack the usual light-blue tint commonly associated with cinematic electricity.
The hue of the bolt seems to be leaning more in the direction of purple, which is frequently used in games to delineate psychic powers. Could this be psychic lightning? I know it might be a bit of a stretch, but that doesn’t look like your everyday Palpatine party trick
He Doesn’t Hide Behind His Troops
When attacked by the player he almost seems bemused by the attack, sending projectiles deflecting off some kind of a shield. Also, please note the purple hue again, which raises questions as to whether this is a mechanical device protecting him or if it’s his own elevated abilities making that happen. He almost laughs while insulting the freelancer, claiming to have planted many of his kind in the ground previously. If true, this guy has some serious battle credentials and absolutely shouldn’t be taken lightly.
But this isn’t where our Anthem hands-on footage stops. Once the gameplay kicks in you get to feast your eyes on the first Dominion combat encounter of the entire campaign. Do you see anything special that jumps out to you about this faction and their tactics? Were there any other key observations that we missed about The Monitor? Be sure to let us know in the comments below!
Stay tuned, because we’ll be bringing you plenty more from our extensive hands-on time with BioWare’s Anthem.