One of the new games I saw at PAX East this year was Livelock, coming from Tuque Games and published by Perfect World. It's an action shooter slash RPG hybrid, and action fans can just jump right in to the wall-to-wall combat, but it also has enough cool story behind it to keep players exploring the world and uncovering its secrets.
To set the stage: the world is threatened by a massive gamma ray strike, killing humanity, but not before the people came up with the idea of uploading their consciousnesses into mechanical robot bodies. The world has since splintered into several factions, one of which is led by an entity named Abaddon, who sees himself as the embodiment of entropy, and is dedicated to sowing chaos everywhere. Another faction has become insectoid, moving and fighting as swarms. The player (or players, the game is single-player, or multi-player co-op,) plays the part of one of three robot warriors: Vanguard, a close combat specialist wielding a massive hammer, Hex, a ranged sniper, who is an expert with various guns, and Catalyst, a support unit who commands her drones to move about the battlefield seeking efficient kills.
Each of the three has a distinct personality and fighting style, and much of the storytelling is told via them and their memories of their lives as humans. Vanguard is rather introspective, and questions his actions seeking deeper meaning. Hex, on the other hand, is a brash former e-sports athlete, who loves to gloat and taunt his enemies as he destroys them. Catalyst was formerly a member of the military, she was highly trained when she was human and is supremely competent and confident.
In addition to their unique weapons and support systems, each character will “level up” as the game is played, allowing them to tweak their abilities and weapons to provide a great deal of customization, giving players the opportunity to tweak their character to best suit their playstyle.
The gameplay I experienced was pretty straightforward, your team is dropped into a location and given an objective or objectives, then it's destroy, or be destroyed. Enemies vary from hordes of small, individually weak drones, who try to overwhelm you with numbers, to massive bosses, seemingly invulnerable to anything but well-coordinated attacks. I played as Vanguard, I figured the most durable character would be suit a noob such as myself, but it didn't take me long to get into the rhythm of swinging the huge hammer, and using my shield ability to protect me and my allies from ranged attacks. Of course, right as we hacked our way through the bad guys and reached the boss, the demo ended, leaving me tantalized with the sight of the boss, but not the opportunity to fight him. I guess they have to save something for the game's release.
Speaking of release, you should see Livelock by the end of this year, on PC, XB1 and PS4.