Thursday, 17 October 2013

Review: Legends of Aethereus (PC)

legends of aethereus Role-playing games (RPG) are not everyone's bread and butter. For me, I find a good smattering of JRPGs (Japanese role-playing games) and domestic RPGs are part of a balanced gaming diet (apparently I should not write while hungry). Legends of Aethereus reminds me greatly of North American style of RPGs – visually similar to Ultima Online: using a 3rd person perspective, you guide your character through a series of quests in the never ending pursuit of riches and construction materials.

Unlike most RPG systems - Legends of Aethereus doesn't use equipment drops or loot drops particularly often. The majority of your loot will be crafting items. As you progress in skill level – you develop your own crafting talent making better items for yourself. For once, the store is not bereft of useful items – any missing parts for your gear can actually be bought at the store.

legends of aethereusThe main game mechanic is definitely questing – from your main city, you are assigned your task and travel by airship to the questing area. Once there, you will spend anywhere from 15 to 45 minutes completing your checklist of tasks that your quest entails. For some reason, upon starting a quest – you can only end it one of two ways, success or death, there is no opt out or return to base option (and don't ask about saving your game). Once back in town, you sell your junk upgrade whatever you can and repeat the same basic formula.

The almost grind-like approach to progressing the game could be forgiven if there was some actual draw to the combat. Instead we get a shambling mess of "will it hit?" or odd animation pauses that make the most frequent in-game activity downright frustrating. My first few levels, I focused on making a brute – hits hard and all the subtlety of a rock thrown through a plate glass window. After multiple combat sessions of getting increasingly frustrated (the slow response from my own character; hit or missed attacks that made no sense) I switched gears and instead built a ranger-style character. I figured that the ranged attack system may be better – instead I get a weird animation slowdown after every attack, where the animation for reloading never seems to start correctly.

legends of aethereus

All in all, Legends of Aethereus was a frustrating game to play; it failed to really innovate anything besides a crafting system – which is like buying a car because the cup holders are really big…. Kind of missing the point.

- Tazman

The Good:
- Extensive crafting system

The Bad:
- Visually a step back from the competition
- Combat system is downright awful

Score: 4.0 / 10

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