Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Game Review - Numen: Contest of Heroes

Game Review - Numen: Contest of Heroes
Score +2/-7

Run around killing things. Large amount of grinding.
++ Graphics: The style of artwork and the lighting really enhance the overall look of the world. Overall a beautiful gaming environment. Textures are also very good.
- Character Development: Boring skills with boring animations. Some skills are clearly clones of each other given to the three classes (Warrior, Archer, Mage).
- Combat: Horrible concept as -- and even in the manual it says this -- it really depends on the exploit of not "pulling" (getting the attention of) too many enemies. On any difficulty this will be the case. The manual even says to use potion extensively, which further suggests a very flawed concept (or at least a bad mathematical model). In any other game this would be considered an exploit. In Numen, it is a necessary survival tactic.
- Combat: The manual tries to make it sound strategic, but really it comes down to button mashing skills while waiting for other skills to cooldown. You start with some skills that have very fast cooldowns, so you are just using those constantly.
-- Combat: You have range and line of sight limitations, but the enemy does not. They can shoot through walls and other barriers, and have remarkably long range when you are fleeing. When they cannot path-find toward you or when they break off pursuit, they recover health very quickly, but you do not when you are fleeing. You can test this by trying to keep your distance from an enemy while shooting at them with a bow. Eventually the target will be too far from its starting location and turn back, and while it is running back to its original position, it will recover health at a great rate.
- Combat: Archers and Mages are advised to keep their distance, but this does not really work in practice. The range for attacks and powers is very short. Also, enemies will turn back to their starting position if they are too far away, and once they do, their health regenerates very quickly (your health never achieves that much regeneration speed when out of combat). They will also regenerate health very quickly if they are still trying to path-find their way to you. You can see this latter situation in practice by fighting the scorpions during the childhood tutorial phase. Stay high on the slopes. Often the scorpions will have to walk along the base of the hill until they find a shallow enough slope to crawl up. During this time, they often have very fast health regeneration.
- Pacing: Extremely boring pacing. Every new area has monsters typically much stronger than you. Even if you use the exploit of pulling only one enemy at a time, there will typically be a lot of running away and retrying fights until your level improves enough to handle them. This means each area typically starts with very boring grinding until you can handle it.

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