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One of Steam’s top free games reveals new character and Gundam collab

Free Steam game Naraka Bladepoint reveals a new hero and weapon at Naraka Fest, alongside martial arts cosmetics and a Gundam collaboration.

One of the most popular free Steam games, Naraka Bladepoint, now goes beyond its original battle royale mode with PvE additions such as the Showdown campaign that transforms it into a co-op game, or the recently added Yama’s Abyss roguelike mode. At Naraka Fest 2023, developer 24 Entertainment shows off the game’s future, including a glimpse at its next hero and weapon, and collaboration projects with Chinese martial arts schools and the creator of the legendary Gundam mecha franchise.

At its celebration event, we got confirmation of the next Naraka Bladepoint character to join the roster – although it’s not an entirely new face. Shayol Wei, the governor of the Golden Keepers of Icuria, is set to arrive in 2024, but she was actually seen on the first official poster for the free Steam game. Her Vortex Shield can be used in both offensive and defensive capacities, and we’ll get to see more of her in action soon after the new year rolls around.

Naraka Bladepoint's new hero Shayol Wei, a warrior wearing long white clothing with a red and black cape.

The new Naraka Bladepoint weapon is the Heng Sword, which arrives Wednesday, January 3, and it’s likely to be a favorite for all of you looking to live out your samurai fantasies. The gameplay reveal trailer, which you can watch below, shows off its rapid slashing combos, with some lovely sweeping attacks and added mobility to put you behind your enemies. It also offers the potential for Iaijutsu, the quick-draw technique allowing you to catch your enemies off-guard, along with some more magical attacks to cover wider areas.

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Kicking off with today’s Naraka Bladepoint on Thursday December 21 is the Martial Infinity event. You’ll choose to align yourself with one of five legendary martial arts schools: Will-Form, Tai Chi, Wing Chun, Baji, or Shaolin. You’ll be able to take on daily quests and school-specific quests to earn special rewards and ‘martial fame,’ the latter of which can be used to claim additional rare rewards.

Each school has inspired distinctive hero and weapon cosmetics, while five new ink wash Souljades will give gorgeously animated special moves to classic weapons associated with each of the schools. 24 Entertainment says, “Not only did professional martial artists assist with motion capture and creative design, but the team also sent developers to a Shaolin Temple to experience the fundamentals of martial arts culture, including 5am morning practice of course!”

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Last but certainly not least to come out of Naraka Fest is a collaboration with iconic mecha designer and Gundam creator Kunio Okawara. The legendary artist has created a mecha design for Naraka Bladepoint’s Yueshan, which arrives in summer 2024, and which will also be released as an actual model kit.

You can get your first glimpse at the design in the teaser video below. “As creators ourselves, we all learned a lot from Mr. Okawara’s creativity, skills, and open-mindedness,” 24 Entertainment lead designer Ray Kuan says.” It’s already looking fantastic, and the lightning-fast pace and unflappable style of Gundam is certainly an excellent match for Naraka.

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As mentioned, if all these future announcements have you wanting to play right now then you’re in luck, as there’s a new Naraka Bladepoint update live for Thursday December 21. It includes the new Hadi rework, which sees his changes made to his skills and ultimate, the start of the aforementioned Martial Infinity event, and a holiday event called Holly Christmas, where you’ll earn Pinecones for completing quests, which can then be turned in for rewards.

Looking to prove you’re the best around? Then you’ll want to check out the best battle royale games on PC. Alternatively, there’s plenty more of the best free PC games out there, so you can be sure you’ll have lots to keep you busy this holiday season.

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