RPG fans looking for some action? I believe we may have some details for you about a little game out on the Xbox 360. You may have heard about some game “trying” to be Diablo 3 with its dungeon crawler like style, upgrades, magic, and essentially a formula to make people come back to play again and again. What we have for you is Torchlight
, a beautifully crafted game that does a really good job following this already pre-established formula, and does it even better.
It was a Saturday evening and the download for Torchlight was completed on our Xbox 360 showing, that at least for a start, the developers at Runic Games knew what they were doing to get past all of the Microsoft standards to release a game. You start off by picking a type of character you would like to play: Destroyer (Melee), Vanquishers(Range), and Alchemists(Magic). As you can see, each type of player has their own attack specialty, and they can also have a pet to follow them around. Once you have decided what gender and class you will be, you will start out in Torchlight.
The first thing you will notice about Torchlight, a mining town, is that it has a nice cartoon like feel to it. Essentially giving you the same look of World of Warcraft and Mythos. Which should be expected since the developers are creators of Mythos. The townsfolk of Torchlight all work well with the environment and look really good. They walk, run, and attack as needed and don’t look weird in a pre-planned sort of way. The main gamplay of the game is a simple rule for all dungeon crawler games. You will go to a dungeon that is randomly generated, take care of all enemies you encounter, scoop their loot, level up in the process, and return to town to sell for more items. All of the items created within the game are randomly generated just like the maps. So that means that even though you will gain levels by killing and completing various side quests, the weapons, armor and supplies are never the same. So if you think you will get that super sweet battle axe you had in the same room from the last time you went in there, you will be feeling a little left out as it will probably never show up there again. This makes for a lot of fun because you constantly want to kill more and more to get more and more cool items.
In addition, you can learn spells by picking up scrolls that fall to the ground. And in case you don’t want to unlearn a spell for the new one you have, pass it off to your pet. Remember, they can cast spells as well. This is probably one of the biggest things I like about the game. You pet will be able to carry some of your loot for you, attack others in battle, and even cast spells. And when you are done being wow’d by the fact your pet is creating little skeletons to help you tear down a flood of zombies, you can send them back to town with the loot you do not want to sell. There is something just satisfying with sending my dog off to town to barter with the sales folk and bring back a sweet sack of gold for me. Since Torchlight is a mining town, all of the precious minerals you find through your quests can be collected and applied to your equipment. Meaning you can take that Dull Cracked Firestone mineral you found, apply it to a sword, and gain a +4 for each hit you do to an enemy. Or apply a Pure Crystal ember to a ring you are wearing, giving you +6 in electrical attack protection. If you have more that one of the same item, visit someone in town and have them transmute the two items together, giving you a new stone with combined powers. Note to Runic Developers: ALLOW SORTING ON STONE LIST. We say that because sometimes it is hard to find two of the same stone on your pack because the names are very similar and usually just different by their color.
The games sounds are very well done. Sometimes companies will spend all of their extra money on graphic and movement development leaving the sound portion of the game less than desirable. The music you listen to as you walk around town or battle big bosses will get you really into the game, especially if you are playing with a surround sound system making the experience even better than with regular speakers. One thing that would be really nice with Torchlight is the ability to co-op the game. No multi-player really does bring this one down as being able to move through the dungeons with your friends one evening could be satisfying.
Even though there is no multi-player option in Torchlight, you will have a fantastic time playing the game. If you are an action-RPG fan, and are looking for something entertaining on your console, then this is a game you will want to buy. You will be entertained for roughly 15-20 hours of nonstop and never the same gameplay.
4 out of 5 Widows