It’s been a mostly dry Summer for new game releases, at least for me. I probably could occupy my time by buying a bunch of indie games but those don’t always provide the most satisfying “bang for your buck”.
This week the newest iteration of Gauntlet came along and I also have been playing the new updates to Minimum, which I wrote about some time ago. Here’s a rundown.
Gauntlet: Originally created by Ed Logg and Atari Games for arcades, Warner Bros. is the owner of all Atari Games and Midway properties. As such if you are wondering what is going on with IPs like RoadBlasters, Xybots, Robotron, NARC and so on, ask them. The decision to reboot Gauntlet comes some years after the last failed attempt when John Romero’s name was attached to the project (giving it a marketing boost although he was not the only person to work on the game) but that was panned. I don’t know why exactly as I did not play Seven Sorrows. I’ve played all of the other Gauntlet’s however, the four arcade versions up to Dark Legacy (I own a DL at my arcade) as well as the sometimes forgotten Atari Lynx version which was called Third Encounter. Nerd class FTW!
This new Gauntlet was developed by Arrowhead Studios which is responsible for Magicka games. I have not played those but in playing with some friends (a few of which are game developers or involved in that in some manner) last night on multiplayer, they noticed a few elements from that series that appear in the new Gauntlet.
I heard that the game was “too much” like the original but I dunno, I found it to have a few differences, enough for it to stand out on its own really. The Warrior and Valkyrie classes do not have projectile attacks, so they are close range classes. You do not have magic that works at all like the arcade versions – the potions you pick up charge relics, which you first have to buy (in-game gold, this is not F2P fortunately), then equip, then you can use. Those relics can be upgraded. You also can purchase equipment to improve your character; there are a lot of “perks” that level up to modify your character as well, as opposed to the leveling system like Gauntlet Legends. Enemy generators do not show up as often as in the previous arcade games but they make up for it with the amount of enemies they generate, which can quickly overwhelm. You have a few different attacks, especially if you are the wizard where you have 9 spells to try and learn – in the hands of a good player and the right controller, he can wipe out a lot of enemies.
I need to get a PC controller of some kind to better enjoy this as the keyboard/mouse combo isn’t working as nicely as I wanted, mostly due to aiming. When the on-screen action gets packed, sometimes I am slashing in the wrong direction. It’s less of a problem with a character like the elf although there is an odd bug of his shots not working very well on inclines/declines like stairs which can be annoying. NOTE: After I published this post, a 777 MB patch was released to address various issues. Downloading it now and will see how much is changed to the game
Those issues aside, it was fun and I imagine it will get a bit of extra play. Graphically it’s nothing fancy, a slight improvement over Torchlight II (better lighting/shadow effects) although I have not played it on my more powerful PC just yet.
I reviewed a “beta” version of this game back in June, click here in case you haven’t heard what this game is all about. This game which uses the graphics technique of flat-shaded polygons is now available for purchase. It is $10 currently but it already was on a Steam sale for a time for $5. It is not quite complete yet, lacking a few features like structures to be implemented but the main modes are all there – Titan, deathmatch and Horde. I have spent most time playing the Horde mode for whatever reason, which is a co-op team mode where you fight odd characters like dinosaurs and samurai’s. It still has a few bugs to work out on this particular mode but it is fun, moreso with a competent team. I like that they went with some odd creature choices, that makes it more memorable than just fighting random block people for this kind of mode.
I haven’t spent a ton of time with it yet but as far as I can tell, Titan mode is the same. They have more maps now however which is nice as for a while there it just switched between two of them which could get old fast.
I will see if I can get the chance to spend more time on this soon but with Gauntlet and Hyrule Warriors coming along (I will get that one despite no online co-op) I will have to manage my gaming time effectively to get to everything.