Spacetime Studios is at it again with another MMORPG. This time, there will be blood.
Spacetime Studios already has two hit MMORPGs on iOS, which is more than most developers can say. Not only are their games available on iOS, you can also download them for Android and Google Chrome. To top it off, they work across the different platforms, so you can play with your friends no matter what kind of device they are using. These are no small accomplishments, and they have just launched a third MMO called Dark Legends, that looks to supplant its predecessors.
Dark Legends follows a similar formula to Space and Pocket Legends. The glaring difference that you will notice the moment you boot up the game is that it is, well, darker. Their other two MMOs had more of a fun and cute feel, while Dark Legends embraces the fact that it is a vampire game with lots and lots of blood. There is nothing cute about Dark Legends, and that is just fine with me.
Playing Dark Legends feels like a mix between a real MMO and one of those Mafia Wars style games that used to be incredibly popular on iOS. In a way, it actually feels like a digression from the previous games, which were much more like a traditional MMO.
Your character has energy in this game, and that is what allows him to complete tasks throughout the world. Some missions will involve simply clicking on the icon and waiting for the mission to finish. These missions still grant experience and loot, but the player does not actually do anything for these missions.
Every few missions, you get to fight, and that is when the real fun happens. For each fighting based mission you can choose to either play it solo, play it multiplayer or use platinum (the in-game currency that you buy with real money) to skip it and collect the rewards. If you click multiplayer and there is no one else to play with, it will let you go solo and someone can join as you are in progress.
The combat in the game is fun, but fairly simple. Most of the time you will be running around, clicking the attack button to engage the bad guys. There are also spells, which are more powerful than standard attacks. The trade-off is that the energy used to cast a spell is your health, so you need to be careful how often you use them.
While the combat may not be the deepest thing out there, it is still a lot of fun. It brings some quality hack-and-slash gameplay that is a lot of fun, even if not super deep. After all, this is a dungeon crawler more than anything, and the point of a dungeon crawler is to collect loot and explore dungeons. While the loot in this game is not amazing when compared to something like Diablo 3, it is more than good enough for an iOS game.
Besides the combat, Dark Legends has all the things you would expect from an MMO. There is a hub world where you can go hang around with other players, an auction house where you can buy and sell loot with other real players and a PVP battleground.
There are plenty of microtransactions for you to buy stuff for your character. When I say plenty, I mean a whole lot! You can buy weapons, costumes, more energy, mission skips and even experience to level up your character. You can still purchase plenty of stuff with in-game money, but do not worry if you are short on fake money, because you can use real money to buy more fake money. If you are the kind of player who is turned off by microtransactions, you will not like this game.
The game controls the way you would expect a hack-and-slash to control. You tap the attack button to launch your standard move, use the joystick to move and tap the spell buttons to cast spells. You can also tap a place on the screen to have your character move there, and while this is fine when moving; during combat, I found the joystick to be the much more effective way to get around.
Visually, Dark Legends looks average. It is not going to stop you in your tracks by any means, but considering the genre, it looks pretty good. There is plenty of blood and gore. For people who complain that there are not enough violent looking games on iOS, this should more than satisfy them.
The sound in the game can get a little repetitive, but it is not necessarily bad. You will hear a lot of yelling and sword swinging as you venture through the game, and you might get sick of it, but thankfully, there is always the vibrate switch if you do not want to hear the sound anymore. It does not detract from the game, but it does not really add anything to it either.
Overall, this is another solid entry from Spacetime Studios. They have shown that they can still make a good MMO for iOS. That being said, the energy mechanic that is taken from the Mafia Wars style of games makes it feel less like a full-fledged MMO, and more like an asynchronous mobile game. Still, it’s free to jump in and try (with plenty of available microtransactions), so there is no reason not to at least take it for a spin to see if the darker vibe is more suited to your tastes than their previous light-hearted games.
Dark Legends is available for free. Get it on the App Store.