First screenshot from Dishonored shows off swordplay

Game Informer has posted the first screenshot from Dishonored, the new stealth/action IP from Arkane Studios. As you can see by the gun, sword and garb, the title takes place in an early industrial world -- one with some fantasy twists. Players will be cast Corvo, a talented (and somewhat supernatural) former bodyguard who's wrongly imprisoned for the murder of an Empress he was supposed to be protecting.

Like Thief and Deus Ex, also games made by Dishonored co-creative director Harvey Smith, the title will be built around a series of open-ended tasks involving stealth and combat. Game Informer mentions using "mobility, powers and gadgets, environment, and AI" to affect the gameplay, and letting the player do things like stop time to distract guards, or summon a rat swarm, and then "possessing" one of the rats to sneak away.

Our interest is piqued, but don't let the excitement get the best of you, just yet -- the game isn't due out until sometime next year.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.