Fans of episodic murder mysteries get ready to add another to your watch list as The Council has been announced to add into the mix and will be bringing all the intrigue you may have been waiting for on the PS4, Xbox One, and PC. It also looks like history and occult buffs may want to take notice too as Big Bad Wolf is mixing all of that in as it looks like a good period piece with all of those iconic people from 1793 that were "ruling" the world. People like Napoleon Bonaparte and George Washington to namedrop a few, but I am guessing the rest of The Council will be filled with others from around the world during the time as our protagonist looks for his missing mother while trying to navigate all of the social machinations and skills of all of the others at this weird gathering of the minds. That seems to be the easiest way to describe this for now as we only have the bare basics from Focus Home Interactive so far. Even with the first episode landing in February of next year.
Okay, that may be a bit off as we do know that in The Council we will have some extra skills to help us manipulate our way through the story and try to get our chosen outcome easier than just making the proper dialog choices. I am guessing this will be something similar to what we have seen in the recent version of Life Is Strange so we can "talk" our way into a different place than where we start. There is not much on the "15 diverse skills" that we will have, but that is how it sounds. At least we can rest assured that all of our choices and movements in The Council will have some kind of a lasting effect on the story and world. That and we will not be able to change them after they have been set down.
The Council — Teaser Trailer
The Council begins in 1793, with players taking the role of secret society member Louis de Richet after his invitation to a private island off the shores of England by the enigmatic Lord Mortimer. Joining him are a number of high profile guests, including Napoleon Bonaparte and President of the newly-formed United States of America, George Washington. The strange nature of this private reception goes beyond just the prestigious guests –Richet’s own mother has recently gone missing on the island, while each and every one of the colorful cast seems to have their own hidden agendas.
In a new twist for the genre, the core of The Council’s gameplay comes from manipulating and maneuvering through character encounters using the unique Social Influence system. During confrontations, skills and limited resources can be used to gain the upper hand and achieve the desired outcome. Players will be rewarded for their knowledge of each character’s psychological vulnerabilities and immunities, as well as their preparations made during prior exploration and investigation. Failing an encounter does not mean ‘game over’, and no action can be taken back. The consequences are permanent and may result in persistent physical disfigurements or mental traits that help or hinder the rest of the player’s adventure.
Richet’s numerous skills can be developed to align with your chosen approach to the adventure. Solve issues with diplomacy, delve into occultism to expand your historical and scientific knowledge, or play detective and see what others do not perceive. Your skills will have uses that extend far beyond your conversations with fellow guests. With 15 diverse skills to use and invest in, players are free to uncover The Council’s mysteries how they see fit, with wildly varying consequences depending on their methods. The results will forever alter the life of Louis de Richet, of those around him, and shape history as we know it.
Wait, that is one of the big features listed here for The Council from Big Bad Wolf? That our choices will be permanent in the game? Is that not the usual case in these episodic titles where there is not a specific mechanic added in to reverse time? Unless this means that we can only play through the game once and will be locked out afterward, I do not see how that is a huge thing to focus on here. It could mean that once we piss someone off in the game they are forever pissed off and no amount of word-working can alter that, but that is not how the world normally works either. I know I am a bit confused on that, but this is what we have to go on for now. Maybe in a few weeks we will have more for The Council and get to know just what the aim is with the skills and "permanent" choices that are mentioned here.
What do you think of The Council as we see it here? Do you think that the skills will truly play a huge part in things here given how episodic titles go or will they be a nice distraction to make us "see" something new? What is your take on the permanent choice thing here and do you think it could mean anything like I mentioned? Let us have all of those thoughts and discussions down in the comments. As we get more for The Council, you will get more for the game. As long as you stick around on the site that is. Do so that way you can see how all of this progresses up to the launch of the first episode.