Mirror's Edge Catalyst locks off many of the franchise's previously-core abilities behind XP upgrades, causing discontent among some fans.
Thanks to the lifting of a preview embargo, screenshots have emerged revealing a skill tree that, in addition to gear and combat upgrades, features movement techniques like quick-turns, rolls, and pole-swinging.
Catalyst requires the player unlock these skills as the game progresses, like every other game that features an arbitrary levelling system.
Reactions from Mirror's Edge fans have ranged from ambivalent to negative, as in the original game, Faith's skill set was complete from the very first level.
DICE senior producer Jeremy Miller said the game's RPG elements are a way to gradually introduce skills to the player.
"Part of having this progression in there is to allow you to be able to master your tools, and to give you a little bit of breathing room so you feel confident and excited about what you can do," he told GameSpot.
"We’ve seen a distinct increase in people going, 'Oh, I’ve got this, how do I use it?' It’s worked into people’s movement language much more successfully as a result of doing that."
Given the controlled nature of the previews, it is unclear how much of the tree will be unlocked from the start of the game, or exactly how gradual Miller's "breathing room" will feel to experienced players.
Mirror's Edge Catalyst launches May 24th for new-gen consoles and PC.