Din’s Curse Preview (PC)

Posted by Christophor Rick (TheSuperGuido), Feb 25, 2010 11:19

For some reason I have a soft spot for Soldak and their games (Depths of Peril and Kivi’s Underworld). Ever since I played that first one I have always looked forward to the next. Maybe it has something to do with them being able to mix good graphics (not top of the line) with old school RPG play mixed up with some strategy elements.

Now I got my hands on a preview of the upcoming Din’s Curse and it’s exactly what I’ve come to expect.

Soldak isn’t about cutting edge graphics and requiring overclocking and three graphics cards. They’re about fast-paced fun with a retro tinge. They’re about old school chic and hardcore dungeon crawling. Well OK, they’re not always about that stuff but they do tend to lean in those general directions.

Now things aren’t always smooth when you’re making a new game and so the preview is based on the beta. That means that things aren’t always going to be super smooth. Like when there are so many items on the screen that you can’t see the enemies to attack and with no auto-attack it gets sort of difficult to succeed. You can toggle the names of things off and on via the Alt keys though. Sometimes you have to try to run out of an area. In fact, it sure seems like far more things drop from enemies, etc than you could ever hope to pick up and haul back to trade. To that end sometimes an NPC will pop up that you can trade with on the levels, albeit extremely rarely.
Since Din’s Curse is still set in the same world, the Depths of Peril world that is, a lot of the features and even creatures are familiar by now.

Din, champion of the gods, has cursed you into a second life of service because you selfishly squandered your first one while causing misfortune to those around you. To redeem yourself, you must impress Din by building a reputation for helping others. Travel the spacious western plains of Aleria and save desperate towns from the brink of annihilation. Until you’re redeemed, you’re doomed to wander the earth alone for all eternity.

You will explore an extensive underground, slaying dangerous monsters, solving dynamic quests, dodging deadly traps, and in your spare time, plundering loot. Quell uprisings, flush out traitors, kill assassins, cure plagues, purge curses, end wars, and complete other dangerous quests or the danger WILL escalate. Not all is as it seems though, traitors will gladly stab you in the back, renegades can revolt against the town, spies can set up ambushes, and items might even curse or possess your friends.

Choose one of 141 class combinations and journey to an infinite number of dynamically generated towns with vastly different problems. Every game is a surprise! Your actions have real consequences in this dynamic, evolving world. Your choices actually matter!

You won’t save every town because some require you to hack through 9 levels of dungeon just to solve one quest, which happens to be integral to saving the town. Plus, some quests require you to collect something (say a half dozen Skeleton skulls) but then when you go to the specific level, you might wait around for the skeletons to appear and the quest will end before you find them - even though you explored the whole level over and over!

It’s a lot of mouse clicking and after awhile my finger gets tired and I don’t want to play anymore. Some kind of limited auto attack would be brilliant and save a lot of repetitive stress disorder for fans of Soldak. I have found that you can just aim with the mouse and if you loaded up your attack skills on the numbers can quickly attack, use items and even switch between ranged and melee setups.

All in all, Din’s Curse, which is beta version 0.905, is another fairly cool Soldak special. Heavy on the hack and slash and light on just about everything else. But there are standard RPG elements including learnable skill, classes with specializations and attribute boosting as you level up. Just don’t take a Trickster/Magician mix because he’s slow to plod through levels... That reminds me, perhaps I should try a different character, like an Archer Weaponsmaster.

Rating: 5.0, votes: 4

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