Developed by Sloclap, and published by Digital Devolver; Absolver is an online multiplayer RPG/Fighting game hybrid, with a focus on realistically paced martial arts melee combat. Players can explore the game world in cooperative PVE, to find loot and defeat bosses in a short story mode, collect xp, and unlock more moves for their character, and put these skills to the test as they compete in ranked Combat Trials, which comes with it's own set of rewards for victorious combatants.
The game features a complex Stance system along with ~210 moves to slot into a "Deck", allowing infinite combination customization and strategy around move choices and attack strategy. Each move can be unlocked by defeating enemies in the open world or in combat trials. The base game featured 96 hand to hand moves, with roughly 90 more sword attacks, and will receive 41 additional moves with the release of Absolver: Downfall.
Absolver features five distinct defensive "Styles" on the controller's right stick that require the use of accurate timing and prediction as well as reaction to supplement and further enhance traditional blocking mechanics. The five include Windfall, inspired by chinese Gung-Fu, with ability to directionally avoid attacks, Forsaken, with the ability to parry incoming attacks from two sides, based around Japanese Kenpo Karate, Faejin, based on Bruce Lee's Jeet Kune Do, which is a hybrid class that combines elements of Windfall and Forsaken, dependent on a character's stance facing forward or away, Kahlt, based loosely on kickboxing and Capoeira, with the ability to absorb and punish incoming attacks, as well as Stagger style, based on Jackie Chan's Drunken Master, which allows for unpredictable movement and charging which will negate many normal-attacks but requires precise timing and misdirection from the other four listed styles. Feinting, which is performed by hitting block between attacks, also known as cancels, allow for players to condition opponents to patterns, effectively working as a fakeout mechanic which as players become more adept at handling the fighting mechanics, can give them the upper hand in confusing the opponent with unpredictable timing in string-sequences.
Absolver also features Shard Powers that can be activated after successful use of any defensive style to disrupt the flow of a fight, not dissimilar to a "Super". Each style can be unlocked, and move designation is not limited to any style, allowing players to mix and remix their Deck in tandem with each style for emergent strategy and unpredictable encounters each fight.
Experienced players can create "schools', where a deck set by the school's founder is accessible to all students who follow, who in turn unlock the moves even faster than normal simply by using the deck- and each new student and victory bumps the school's ranking in a leaderboard; the most victorious schools will receive fresh unique rewards every three months.
Absolver also features a point capture 3v3 mode, and many more modes are in the works for both 2018, and 2019.
Released in August 2017, Absolver was PS+ Game of the month in August 2018, and all platforms will receive a second-helping for free with Absolver: Downfall, the game's awaited expansion, including a new style, reworked AI, as well as a replayable raid-mode into the Essence Mines, in which players enter randomly generated dungeons to collect "Gleam", while facing new, bigger, deadlier bosses than featured in the base game, in order to craft and collect new items and weapons to further build and customize their fighter. Many more features are coming as well, and the details can be found on the Sloclap Development Blog.
Absolver: Downfall will release for free on PS4 and PC on Sept. 25th, 2018.
Available currently on PC and PS4, Absolver will release on Xbox One some time in 2019.