It is always nice to see how a promising game like Dauntless progresses over time. I checked it out at last years show and was not blown away but a year's of growth and iteration has made this a much improved experience.
This is a game that is all about exploration and encounters with the Behemoths. As the game progresses the Slayers will get new items, armor and weapons to battle future larger Behemoths as they are revealed. The gameplay itself takes place in a third person view with your character being picked at the beginning and equipped with specific devastating weapon types. To switch up the gameplay there are also a number of equippable limited use items players can leverage.
I had a chance to play a round with some other players at PAX East and had a blast. I picked a character with a very cool looking Pike and was dropped into the map with the other players. The first task is to find the Behemoth (which we chose as the Shrike at the start of the round) and then engage it. One of the players found the creature and sent up a Flare to signal the team. Once the creature is located the battle can start.
Once more people have access to the game Phoenix Labs will be able to show off their vision of the game. The Dauntless Open Beta will be available as a free-to-play experience with an in-game store supported by a variety of cosmetic and vanity items. Phoenix Labs assured me that there are no paywalls or pay to win mechanics in the Dauntless experience, and there will be no form of purchasable loot boxes.
Dauntless was a lot of fun to experience with others and the Open Beta finally launching on May 24th will be a great boost to the in game population. The title oozes with personality and the last year of growth has gone a long way towards making me excited to experience more of this game as soon as possible.