Thief custom difficulty and UI options detailed

By Alice O'Connor, Dec 06, 2013 10:15am PST

Eidos Montreal may have ruffled a few feathers by disinterring the hallowed corpse of the Thief series, but it's certainly listening to fans' concerns about how video games nowadays are all for babies or something.

After cutting an XP system and scrapping QTEs in its new Thief, the developer has detailed the ways players can customise and strip down the UI, as well as fiddle with the difficulty. No-UI, no-knockout, no-alert, no-damage Iron Man runs, here we come!

The options menu will let players tweak and turn off a grand 19 UI elements, a new blog post details, from the mini-map and navigation prompts to the light gem and threat icons. Players can essentially turn the UI off entirely, if they fancy. The post has a few neat animated gifs showing someone disabling the UI piece by piece, for the curious.

Also customisable is the difficulty. On top of regular easy, normal, and hard modes, Thief has 13 difficulty 'mods' to mess about with. Four are dedicated to making it more like classic Thief, with effects like disabling manual saves and checkpoints, and turning off the bullet time-y 'Focus' system. While some of the 13 are relatively innocuous, others are right pigs.

You could, for example, make it so Garrett moves slowly and if he is detected, harms anyone, or takes even one single point of damage, you'd need to start the entire game over from scratch.

To show off how cool you are, the game will have leaderboards, lead game designer Alexandre Breault explained in the accompanying podcast. Each extra difficulty option will give you a number of points, which will register on the boards when you finish the game. As there's a maximum number of points, the leaderboards will resolve ties by date, so the first person to finish the game on hard difficulty with every mod will be at the top forever.

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