Friday, 29 April 2016

Lichdom: Battlemage

Lichdom: Battlemage is a mix-up of a few different aspects from a few genres coupled with beautiful visuals and effects to create a compelling experience. While things never change all that much, the core gameplay is so enjoyable that it pushes you through when things may get a little repetitive.


Out on May 6th for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 and developed by Xaviant, Lichdom: Battlemage feels like something that came from a team of people who played and enjoyed The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and thought that while the game was good, the combat sucked. They took the magical aspect of it and made it impactful and thoroughly enjoyable. The structure of Lichdom: Battlemage is rather straight forward.  You play as a spell caster and the beginning allows you to choose female or male. Whoever you choose, the other character will be abducted be Shax and you must fight to get him/her back. It's a standard story, nothing extraordinary and is just a foundation for the gameplay that the game focuses on.


It's a spell-casting game that brings the best elements from spell-casting games like The Elder Scrolls series. The catch here though is that there is no resource pool so you can throw fireballs to your heart's content. It all feels pretty cool and each landing attack feels impactful as particles fly around the screen in a symphony of elements.

The game focuses on making spells with the loot that you pick up along the way to tailor-make attacks and defences that will bring you the best results in battle. Throughout the game you move from area to area taking out waves of different types of enemies. Some enemies drop loot while other parts of the environment will give you rewards upon attacking them. The longer you survive the higher chance you will have of receiving better stats and passives for your spells.

The way in which you learn and create new spells is both deep and easy to understand. You can quite easily mix things up or even switch out entire sets to allow you to mix things up pretty quickly. Honestly it never felt cumbersome or complicated and I'm a person that has little patience for bad UI and user experience decisions. Visually. It is a rather nice game, using some incredible effects on CryEngine. Couple the colourful particle effects with great lighting, Lichdom: Battlemage can definitely be attention grabbing at times. It's a treat going to a new area, seeing the stunning visuals, and causing mayhem all over again.


I have to be honest here though. There is one elephant in the room that I haven't mentioned yet. I put this at the end simply because it might not be an issue by the time you get your hands on it but the frame rate as it currently stands is pretty horrendous in places. Like, it's around 15 fps bad. Patches are promised so that may finally reach to 30 by the time the game officially launches but it's definitely worth mentioning here. Lichdom: Battlemage is a fun action spell-casting game that has a cool customisation system in terms of creating spells. The one downside I must say the game has other than the frame rate is that it can become pretty repetitive. Still, despite all of this, it's a worthwhile romp so long as the technical problems are fixed.

A little bit of magic mixed with a slow spell. 3/5.


★★★☆☆

Jason Redmond


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