Signal Studios’ free-to-play action RPG Ascend: Hand of Kul is gearing up for war later this year on Xbox Live Arcade. In the meantime, the folks behind the ambitious hack-and-slash want you to steel yourself for the upcoming Crusade – Ascend‘s persistent multiplayer faction war for control of the world.

The new trailer shows off how every player aligns themselves with one of the new gods, the three entities vying for total dominion. In their names you’ll capture shrines, defend them from invading players and field an army of warriors who automatically attack and convert enemy territory. In this way, you’ll apply constant pressure to other players, without actually have to the pull the trigger yourself.

The other aspect of Ascend: Hand of Kul‘s seamless multiplayer integration allows you to interact with the shades of other players in their own realms. The presentation is similar to Dark Souls, with the added bonus of being able to curse those players with monsters gifted from your deity, banish creatures into their world or bless them with helpful spells, you know… if that’s your thing.