Hood: Outlaws & Legends releases on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One on May 10, 2021. The PvPvE multiplayer game just revealed a gameplay trailer and opened pre-orders on the Xbox Store, so now is the perfect time to dive a little deeper in the core gameplay elements of a medieval heist.
When we started designing the objectives for our showcase game mode we took inspiration from all the best heist movies. The common narrative almost always focused on the 3 distinct phases of: assembling the team to execute the “perfect” plan, the quiet in approach as they breached the vault, and then the exciting (and usually loud!) finale as the team escaped with the loot.
From a gameplay perspective these phases are a perfect fit as they require a different set of skills and tactics depending on the current objective, and the team composition. While stealth is a key component to the game, its not something we enforce upon players. Rather, the use of stealth is often the most optimal way of playing as you will be charging your characters special ability with every silent assassination you perform and progressing through the environment to your objective without being held up to deal with a patrol of alerted guards. It’s also a better strategy if you want to avoid giving away your position to the opposing team.
Infiltrating the stronghold
A stealthy approach is also the best way to get your hands on that treasure vault key. Once you’ve assembled your team you will be given a map showing the patrol path of the Sheriff. This man-mountain is a heavily armoured, almost unstoppable foe. Capable of killing you instantly if you are unfortunate enough to attract his attention. The best approach for this objective is to takedown any guards nearby before sneaking silently behind the Sheriff and pickpocketing the vault key from his belt. Making use of hiding bushes and using access points away from the main path will definitely help you achieve this without escalating the situation, but you still need to keep an eye out for the other outlaw team as they have the same objective.
Unlocking the vault
With the vault key in your possession its time for your team to locate and unlock the treasure vault door. The vaults are located in the tightly guarded state buildings – Keep’s, Garrison’s and Churches. Each is built over multiple floors with a range of access points, some are obvious, but many require a bit more discovery or interaction if you wish to enter without gaining attention. Both the Ranger and Hunter classes have ranged weapons which can be used to deploy climbable ropes for the team to use if you want to avoid the heavily guarded main entrances.
Once you reach the vault door it is likely to be guarded by a state knight, or sentry. Engaging these enemies head on is likely to result in the alarms being raised, which will escalate the AI presence in that area. A better technique is to lure the guard away by whistling or throwing a rock to prompt them to investigate. This provides an opportunity for you to silently assassinate them from behind and access the vault without tripping any alarms.
Escaping with the treasure
Once your team has possession of the treasure chest you will need to decide where you want to extract it from. Picking the best location can depend on multiple factors such as: proximity to your home spawn, which capture points you currently own (which allow your team to respawn from), the path ahead of you (which could be heavily patrolled by guards), and the type of cover the extraction point provides. If your team is without a ranged character then it is often best to pick a zone that is more suited to close combat, and not so vulnerable to long ranged sniper shots.
As you move to the extraction zone you will still need to consider your approach. If a state guard sees you with the treasure chest they will sound the alarms, but instead of simply escalating a region, the entire map will be placed into lockdown. Once lockdown is triggered there is no turning back. You can expect heavy resistance from the more elite guards as they attempt to stop you extracting the loot. You will also, almost certainly, have given away your position to the opposing team. So now the battle to claim your reward begins!
Hood: Outlaws & Legends releases on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One on May 10, 2021. Pre-order the game to receive 3 days early access and play on May 7, and receive the exclusive Forest Lords Pack for your four outlaws.
Hood: Outlaws & Legends (Pre-order)