NetGuide NZ - Loki: Heroes of Mythology – PC

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Loki: Heroes of Mythology – PC

In the traditions of Diablo and Titan Quest, Loki is the latest title in the action RPG genre, otherwise known as a Hack ‘n Slash. Like its predecessors it follows the basic formula of minimal story, almost zero NPC interaction and no great amount of role playing, but copious amounts of death delivered by your Herculean player character, a game style that Loki performs admirably in. With four characters to choose from, a modest amount of zones to play through, over 500 items and almost as many monster varieties, Loki is certainly at least a B list game with a lot of effort put in by a dedicated studio, but there are some regrettable flaws that offset it.

The basic premise of the game is that a great evil being called Seth, the Egyptian God of Death, has risen and seeks to lay waste to everything as big evil bad-asses tend to do. Typically enough your chosen hero is solely able to stand up and fight down this evil, and so you embark on a bloody, body strewn quest to end the God once and for all. Through the course of the game you travel though such exotic locales as Troy and the underworld, slaying everything from spiders to mummies and fighting spectacular boss battles against creatures from mythology like the Medusa and the Cyclops. Along the way NPCs like Achilles provide token amounts of support to aid you on your quest, and you can also pick up and arm yourself with a variety of normal and legendary items in the form of things like Thor’s hammer.

Overall Loki has done a good job at replicating the game play of the genre Diablo spawned, with nice intuitive point and click combat and talking, along with a nice epic plot. The melding of the four mythologies in the game, Norse, Greek, Aztec and Egyptian is well done, particularly in how it is represented in the player characters.

The player can choose to play as the melee heavy Norse Warrior, the archer Greek Warrior, the priest like Aztec Shaman and the Egyptian Sorcerer. Each suits a different playing style, but furthermore through talent trees, each character type can be further specialised towards a specific end. What is somewhat unique in Loki is that while the talent trees are just like those found in Diablo 2 and World of Warcraft, instead of getting a point every level to spend in Loki you have a separate bar called “Faith” which fills up as you gather experience. It is called faith because the separate talent trees are named after Gods in each character’s respective mythologies. The Greek archer for example has Athena, Artemis and Aries, with each talent tree focusing the character towards a specific path like Archery for Artemis, traps for Aries and general abilities for Athena.

The game has its flaws. The engine is modern but not particularly impressive, and while game play is fast and intuitive it suffers from the repetition that all titles in this genre have. There is nothing really new or unique in Loki to set it apart from more established titles like Titan Quest.

Ultimately Loki is for aficionados of the genre. It provides good solid hack and slash game play, but adds nothing new that would draw people in from outside of the realm of action RPGs. The graphics are good but not stellar, the theme is good but not exactly original, and that basically sums up Loki as a whole.
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