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Watch Extinction’s giant-killing gameplay

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Hands-on with a big brawler

Extinction is all about killing giants. It suggests shades of Attack on Titan, except with a medieval feel, rather than anime tropes.

We liked what we saw when the game was first announced back in June. Last week, we got our first hands-on. It's being developed by Iron Galaxy, known for working on fighting games like Killer Instinct and Divekick.

I play as a soldier named Avil who must take down giant man-eating ogres that threaten city and countryside alike. These ogres are aided by minion armies. Missions generally include the killing of minions and of ogres, as well as saving humans and their homes.

The cities are all destructible. If left alone, ogres will happily stomp them into oblivion. Meanwhile, the minions are busy killing humans. Avil must find a balance between saving humans and protecting property.

He moves fast, parkouring up buildings and towers as he travels from one point to another, often making use of a whip to make long swings. He can save humans by taking over crystal obelisks where humans cower in wait of salvation.

Attendant minions are slain by various uses of the A-button, which yields a variety of moves, augmented by rapid, fluid movement, jumps and B-button dodges.

Ogre battles are a different affair. They're a mixture of dodging massive stomps and fist attacks, while getting into position to slice off hands and feet, thus preparing the giant for beheading. The player's sword needs to be charged for this death move, by killing enemies, saving humans, completing missions or hurting ogres.

I worry that the boss battles may become repetitive, given that there are only a limited number of ways they can be killed. But they do come in some variety. More advanced giants use protective wearables, which can only be destroyed by utilizing clever strategies to wear out or destroy the armor.

Extinction is being published by Maximum Games for PlayStation 4, Windows PC and Xbox One. It's expected to be released early next year.