Greed, gluttony, wrath and the other sins are all represented in the four-player cooperative “Party of Sin.” Crankshaft Games had their project playable at PAX East and I had the chance to control lust, sloth, pride and greed through puzzles, platforms and enemies. In the end I wanted to play more.
The multiplayer dynamic – and the unsavory nature of the characters – stands out. They each have unique abilities that have to be used to advance, such as sloth slowing down a fast-moving platform and gluttony eating a fellow player and spitting them up to new heights. Everyone has to work together to advance, and the characters can be switched in and out on the fly when a new situation arises.
In addition to the skills needed to solve the puzzles, all seven have ways of screwing over their teammates either for personal gain or a simple laugh. Envy shoots a green ray that lights up torches during some puzzles, but it also drains the health of her colleagues. Envy recharges her health as the others get brought to near death. Greed has a grappling hook that can be reached to climb new heights and pull up lagging players. It can also ruin their jumps, causing them to fall to their doom.
The opening level takes place in hell, and the characters will advance through purgatory, earth and finally heaven. In this stage, complete with fire and a reddish hue, the characters were eventually recruited and put to use. One puzzle required Gluttony to swallow a meat cube (gross) and then spit it onto a button to open the door. Lust can create platforms, so teammates needed her to advance. It was fairly basic and served as an introduction to the characters. Later levels promise to be much more challenging.
The focus seems to be puzzles, but there’s plenty of combat to be had. There are enemies scattered around the stage and each character’s ability has a different effect. In one section, we were all able to pick up guns and just blasted away at the foes.
If the opening cinematic is any indication, there should be some quality humor as the seven sins fight their way to heaven. Getting all seven characters within 20 minutes was at first a little overwhelming, so I didn’t get the best feel for all the characters (Gluttony is the man though). I’d like to get a few of my friends and some more time with Party of Sin. The four-player multiplayer is local only and the game is expected to ship this summer for PC and Xbox 360.