Dave Yeager
E3 2012: Mistborn: Birthright First Look
From popular author Brandon Sanderson.
06.06.12 - 8:41 PM

Neal and I got a chance during our visit with Little Orbit to see a very, very early look at Mistborn: Birthright, the single player action RPG based on Brandon Sanderson's best selling Mistborn series of books. For those unfamiliar with the series, the books are not just action packed but also feature a very unique system of magic called "allomancy," which revolves around channeling magic through a variety of metals. Each metal bestows a different type of power, with most folks in the fiction having some affinity for one metal in particular. "Mistborn" are unique insofar as they can utilize all of the metals.

The game was only recently announced, but the very early presentation we saw included a small sample of gameplay. If you are a fan of the books (like Neal and I), the execution looks very promising indeed. We were shown the protagonist, a Mistborn named Fiddle, who used his abilities to pull himself toward bits of metal on tall buildings, effectively scaling them. Fiddle also lifted and tossed around some metal objects, demonstrating some of the proposed puzzle potential in the game. Objects that could be pushed or pulled in some way were connected to the protagonist with a thin blue line – it all looked very much like the magic is described in the books.

Perhaps the most interesting nugget of information that was dropped during the presentation was that Brandon Sanderson himself will be writing all of the dialog for the game. In fact, his agreement to the project was apparently contingent on this. For fans of the series this is fantastic news, but those unfamiliar with Sanderson's work can expect a greater quality of dialogue than typically found in games.

Details on the plot itself were sparse in the presentation, but Little Orbit did reveal that the game itself will take place 700 years before the first book in the Mistborn series.

Mistborn: Birthright is a long way off – release isn't scheduled until Q4 2013. But between this game and Young Justice: Legacy, Little Orbit appears to be establishing themselves as a real player in expanding fictional universes in TV and literature through video games. We'll see if they can produce products that are a cut above the usually lackluster adaptations we are used to seeing when it comes to video game tie-ins.