Steelrising retells the French Revolution with robots

Video games love to revisit the period of the French Revolution, a time of great strife and conflict that concluded with King Louis XVI, the last king of France, being executed under the tantalising blade of the guillotine, and the eventual abolishing of the French monarchy. But with Steelrising, another retelling of this tumultuous period wrapped within the glossy veneer of an action RPG, its developers wanted to ask: what if King Louis XVI has turned his love for clockmaking into building a relentless army of automata to quell the rebellion?

While this isn’t exactly the most revolutionary take on the French uprising, at least the game has piqued my curiosity with the metallic sheen and combat prowess of its bombastic robots. You’ll be trawling through the chaotic streets and messy politics of Paris in the French Revolution era as Aegis, an automaton and personal bodyguard of the much maligned Marie Antoinette, the last queen of France. Lots of close quarter combat against these mechanical enemies will be had, at least in the backdrop of a burning, dilapidated Paris.

Steelrising is also created by the studio Spiders, who’s behind the pseudo-historical action RPG Greedfall, which is largely about exploring and occupying a new, exotic world, while forging uneasy alliances. I’ve found it to be a title that has largely failed to subvert its colonist roots. Perhaps Steelrising would be able to deliver a tale that’s as invigorating as its trailer suggests, and of course, present a more compelling alternative to the ideology of revolution in Bioshock Infinite, a game that it seems to be closely mirroring.

Check out the trailer here: