It’s only been three months since Dauntless developer Phoenix Labs introduced players to Thrax, a writhing snake-like behemoth that focused heavily on the Umbral material in the game’s lore. Now, though, the team is ready to wow Slayers one more time by offering up a new behemoth, two new variants, and even a new set of missions for you to take on. We recently went hands on with the update, and fans are definitely in for a treat.
Agarus takes root on September 17 in the Untamed Wilds update.— Dauntless (@PlayDauntless) September 15, 2020
Time to pull some weeds in the latest iteration of Escalation. pic.twitter.com/ekRKf1HLzA
The Untamed Wilds update, which is slated to hit September 17 (is it wrong to consider it a birthday present?) will focus on a few different things – including a brand-new escalation mission that concludes with Slayers taking on a big bad we haven’t seen before. Agarus, which was officially revealed early Tuesday morning, is unlike any other behemoth you’ve come across yet.
Agarus is a poisonous beast that uses its roots and branches to ensnare you, dropping pools of poison along the ground as you fight against it. The design of this new beast is very different from Thrax, which launched in Call of the Void, and it will no doubt bring a new challenge for players to undertake.
During my fight with Agarus, I got a very good idea of what It is capable of. Using its branches and roots, Agarus will smash and throw jabs at you, knocking you down any way that it can. Since we’re also dealing heavily with poison this time around, Agarus makes good use of several traps like poison pools and even orbs that will quickly whittle away your health. It’s a tough fight to be sure – especially if you end up using all your healing flasks before you even make it that far.
While Agarus is definitely the headlining star, there are several other things to be excited about when it comes to the Untamed Wilds update.
Living, breathing story
When I spoke with Andy Burt (PR Manager at Phoenix Labs) and Nick Chester (Communications Manager at Epic Games) back during Call of the Void’s launch, one of the big things that they touched on was how the development team is working to turn Dauntless into a living breathing world. One of the ways the team planned to do this was to bring in story-based missions and quests which would help bring the world to life.
Untamed Wilds is the first time that we’re starting to see this in action thanks to a new series of missions which will send players on hunts for two new variants of classic behemoths. The missions will include some interesting little tidbits of lore, including a good bit of dialogue, and will get you started on your journey to take down Agarus.
During my preview of the update, I was able to play through at least one of these missions and face off against a new variant of the Charrogg. They work well to introduce you to the new poison mechanics and help get acquainted with the new environment that you’re exploring.
Which is the next thing I want to talk about.
New lands, new dangers
The new environments that you explore during the Terra Escalation and the added missions are spectacular. They really feel quite a bit different from the past locations we’ve visited, though I’m sure there are some similarities. The overall theme of the land feels great as you explore, though, and all the way up to the final fight with Agarus, it all works to create this sense that you’re moving towards something dark, ancient, and powerful.
I’m very excited to see how Phoenix Labs continues to explore and expand on Dauntless. There is a lot of hard work being pushed into the game and the new behemoths all offer new moves and dangerous combos for Slayers to master and get acquainted with. The next Hunt Pass, which is also set to release with Untamed Wilds will include some new armor for players to unlock and even the ability to earn back most of the currency that you spend on it – which I think is a really great move for all Season Pass sellers to look into.
All in all, Untamed Wilds is another brilliant expansion on Dauntless’ core systems. Agarus is a joy to fight and an absolute terror to take down if you don’t come in prepared. The new environments offer a great sense of change and really help to drive the ancient forest feeling home. I know I’m excited to dive back in and play through it more when it fully releases, and you can check it out for yourself on September 17.
This preview is based on an early access version of the game provided by the developer. Untamed Wilds will release to all platforms on September 17, 2020 for free.