Indie game developers Endemic Interactive has created a non-fantasy, open world adventure game called Ashbourne, which is set in a world with slightly more realistic combat and a storyline that places you in the shoes of Alexander Marshal, a knight of the Endewyn empire.
Ashbourne just officially released onto the Steam Store today, after starting as a Steam Greenlight game and officially being voted through by the public.
The best way to describe the game is The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind 1.5, without magic that also forgot to put lotion on. The graphics quality for Ashbourne is far better than Morrowind, but at the same time it is nowhere near as nice as Skyrim. Shadows are a bit too dark and the light reflections are a bit too bright. I think it is also pretty obvious that the overall game has a very faded gray look to it as if the world of Ashbourne is trapped within a perpetual state of rain and fog.
Endewyn is a Welsh name in origin, so it sounds like the game will be taking place in the northern parts of Europe near the Ireland and Great Britain area (especially since there is a town called Ashbourne in England), so the state of rain and fog and the faded gray look makes perfect sense if that is the type of setting the developer was going for.
The combat system for Ashbourne however, is very different from Morrowind. The developers describe it as a fluent combat system where every weapon has its own unique fighting style. The gameplay trailer video shows a fast-paced movement system that has more flashy spins and twirls with the combat system, instead of the standard four directional sword swings that we normally get with games like this. Take a look at the trailer I linked below.
The developers also say that there will be a Multi-choice dialogue system in Ashbourne that can alter the story and the path the world will take based on your actions, and that system is also tied to a loyalty and honor system so that you can ally yourself with specific people or factions. Furthermore, Ashbourne</em will also feature a working economy system so that you can buy and sell goods with merchants around the world.
Youtuber TheBlueDragon uploaded eight minutes of gameplay to show what the game is really like, so check out the unedited gameplay video I linked below.
The sword combat looks a bit wonky to me in the above video, but I won’t be able to say for sure until I actually play the game for myself. Ashbourne is now officially available to purchase on the Steam Store, and for a limited time, it is currently marked down with a 20% discount. One of the reviews says the game needs a patch to optimize the game better and fix a crashing problem, so hopefully, the developers will get on that soon.
For more information about Ashbourne you can visit their official website for additional details.