First Impressions Of The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot

Free to play titles and micro-transactions don’t have the best of reputations, but they exist and they’re likely here to stay. I rarely play these types of games, because in my own experience I haven’t come across one that holds my attention for long, or because I haven’t felt they’ve been well designed. Then something like The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot comes along and attempts to break down that idea and steal away any previous notions of what free to play can be.

Ubisoft’s free to play title is a mash up of a dungeon crawler and tower defence, challenging you to create a strong castle while looting others. After downloading the client you’re encouraged to choose a starting character with the help of the PR agent Cornelius. Already The Mighty Quest is dismantling pre conceptions as Cornelius decides that you will be the next star in the Kingdom of Opulencia. There’s four different characters to choose from including the Mage, the Knight, the Archer and the Runaway. While the first three characters have the kinds of abilities you expect the Runaway appeared slightly different, so I decided to choose her.

The Runaway is basically a rock chick armed with a guitar that is used as a melee weapon, and various armour that have names such as Roadie Hood or Lead Singer glove. On top on those you can unlock special moves with my early favourite being Spin Spin Sugar where she spins around knocking enemies down with her weapon. It’s good fun which is made simple by the easy control system in both attacking and defending.

Once my Runaway was ready, the first castle to loot was selected. When you select a castle you’re transported to the entrance and the goal is to take out the defences and get to the treasure room. To move all you do is hold down the left mouse button and move around to guide the character along your path, or click on a point on the map making your character run there. To attack an enemy, you click on them. Special moves, like Spin Spin Sugar, are activated by right clicking. You can have a few abilities lined up but it was here where initially control felt a bit odd as to activate different attacks you had to right click and press the corresponding number. However, you do get used to it eventually.

Looting castles gives you gold and life force, with the former allowing you to buy new equipment while the latter is used to upgrade your own castle. This is where the tower defence aspect comes in as you unlock traps and monsters to place in strategic locations to stop any would be raiders.  I decided to fill mine full of cyclops and fire-breathing statues. It sounds ominous, but they’re some of the weaker defences available. The more life force you have the more monsters and traps that can be unlocked, though you have to first upgrade your castle’s life crystal. If you don’t upgrade that then you won’t be able to add new ways to kill people.

You aren’t present when people raid but are notified if someone has selected to attack your castle and the final result. As my castle defence score is quite low, the people who raided managed to steal some of my gold and life force. I cursed their names when notified and after I did that I noticed a new option appear, revenge. When someone successfully raids your castle the revenge option appears giving you the option to raid their castle in return, which I did because they took my stolen possessions.

Stealing from other players isn’t the only option in the game as there are in game castles to loot ranging in difficulty, depending on the region you’re in. There are several regions, but each one only unlocks if you beat the boss in the final castle. It’s not as simple as walking in and killing them because you have to be the right level to stand a chance. Trying to attack a castle too early will just see you die and lose a bit of loot, which you don’t want to do. It’s here where micro-transactions could be used to buy advantages, but I never saw the need.

You do have the option to buy bling packs using real money which in turn gives you bling to use to buy boosts such as earning XP faster. However, due to the amount of various loot that is dropped in each castle there really doesn’t seem a point to them. Almost after every castle I came out with loot that was stronger than what I had currently equipped, as well as loot I didn’t need. All of that extra loot can be sold for gold which in turn can be used to buy even more. It’s a nice self sustaining system, and something I hope isn’t changed once the game leaves the beta stages.

The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot has some striking and colourful visuals, with movement and attacks just looking so crisp and nice. The only gripe I had was that when a swarm of enemies attacked, which they do often, is that it was hard to click on which one you wanted to attack leading to a bit of a button mash. The sound effects are well done too and the little quips by the characters can be funny, though do get a bit tiresome once you’ve heard the same thing for the tenth time in around thirty minutes. There’s some great voice work though.

The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot shows what a properly crafted free to play title can be like. Yes, there are the options to buy bonuses, like extra defences, but for the most part all of the transaction stuff takes a back seat to what becomes quite an addictive little title. After all, you never know what kind of loot you’ll get next, and the castle you’ve selected may give you something great. Ubisoft have crafted a nice game here and it manages to really take hold of the just one more raid mentality.

If you fancy giving it a go then you can download the beta here. Don’t you dare try and raid my castle though, because I will have my revenge even if we are on friendly terms.

1 Comment

  1. Top stuff, Aran. By total co-in-kee-dink, my mate was playing this last night and was suggesting I try it. I was a bit unsure but your article has definitely tipped me over the edge. I’ll give it a go this weekend. :-)

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