GGUK spend some time with ‘Heroes of Ruin‘.
Heroes of Ruin is an action/RPG game developed by n-space and produced by Square Enix that will be coming to the 3DS early next year. The story tells of a land that has been ravaged by war for more than 100 years until powerful Lords bring a fragile peace to the land. That peace has now become threatened. Ataraxis, who is the founder of the city of Nexus, has fallen ill with a deadly curse and a message is sent out to the people of the land promising great rewards if someone can find a cure.
Players can choose from four different classes; Gunslinger, Vindicator, Alchitect and Savage, each of which have their own strengths and weaknesses. The Gunslinger is a criminal who finds himself in a lot of debt. He’s the kind of guy whose only aim in life is to make money by any means and he is not afraid to fire his pistols or hurl bombs at anything that stands in his way. The Vindicator is a great traveller of the world, trying to redeem himself from past shames. He is a brave soul, strong and courageous, and uses a steel blade to kill his enemies. The Alchitect is a marvellous spell caster from a distant academy. She is a female, driven by her own personal goal to become the best spell caster in all the land. She forever seeks knowledge and strategically uses her powerful and devastating spells. Finally, the last class is the Savage, who has been exiled from his tribe and now seeks power. He has an unhealthy thirst for blood, but will use his tremendous strength and power to overthrow and destroy any enemy that stands before him.
These four very different classes step forward and take the journey into a world that is filled with enemies and beasts that will cause them no end of peril and harm. With their weapons equipped and their pride intact, they will endeavour to find the cure for this devastating curse, become rich and famous, and maintain the peace that the land has only recently found.
At a recent Nintendo Showcase event, Alastair Cornish, External Designer for Heroes of Ruin took through me through a brief tutorial of how the game is played and gave me some insight into the storyline. We began by setting up our characters, which allows for some personalization. You can personalize the way your character looks from the colour and style of your hair to your skin tone and the trim colour of your armour. As your character evolves, your weapons, abilities and amour set can all be customized allowing players to feel unique in appearance whilst also evolving within the game world.
The style of gameplay in Heroes of Ruin is very much “diablo-esque”, with a top-down view, plenty of fighting and an engaging storyline. This type of hack’n’slash game can be very addictive when played with other players in co-op mode, which is offered in a “drop in/drop out” style here. Heroes of Ruin allows the players to wander off and explore different areas by themselves, rather than chaining the players together for the duration of their game. While we made our way through the forest, never feeling completely safe as monsters and enemies kept leaping out of bushes or from behind a tree, it is very easy to enjoy the way that the game looks. The graphics are incredibly well polished and crisp, looking beautiful on the 3DS screen.
After defeating monsters, the player will be treated to the usual loot drops and also some information that is displayed in the top screen giving you a quick overview of the loot. During the fight, displayed alongside the enemy’s health bar, there is often a short message. This message will explain any special properties of the enemy, allowing the player to adjust their attacks and strategy as required.
The amount of weapons and equipment to be found in the game is massive, over 80,000 items in fact, giving players plenty to collect. Making the collection of different items even more interesting will be the Traders’ Network, a feature that allows players to trade items with each other, via StreetPass, to unlock rare weapons, amour and items. Heroes of Ruin offers the chance to continue your adventures by completing new challenges sent to your Nintendo 3DS on a daily basis or by downloading new game content via SpotPass which will include new items and quests. This keeps the game constantly fresh and revitalized, offering an experience which will evolve with time.
The controls worked really well, allowing me to move my character through the environments with ease, and equipping weapons, amour and items was very straightforward and intuitive. Heroes of Ruin also offers voice chat using the 3DS microphone, which is a welcome feature in this impressive action/RPG title.
I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent playing Heroes of Ruin and, While we won’t see the game until early 2012, I look forward to more information being released. Until then, I’ll have to hang up my armour and take a well earned rest until I can continue my quest for a cure for the curse.