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Magicka

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By NeonAnderson05-08-2012
Bobfish (editor)
Blankdoor (editor)
Magicka

The Defence

Developer:
Arrowhead
Publisher:
Paradox Interactive
Genre:
Adventure, Action, Role Playing, Indie
Release Date:
25-01-2011

The Prosecution

CPU:
Intel Pentium 4 2.4 GHz
AMD Athlon 64 3500+
VGA:
Nvidia GeForce 8800
AMD Radeon X1900
RAM:
2 B
HDD:
2 GB
DirectX:
9.0c

The Case

 

Magicka is a quirky action game, in which you play as a robed Wizard, trying to save the land from evil goblins. The game involves combining elements together, to create powerful spells to turn your enemies into guts and explosions, either alone or with friends.

The Trial

 

From looking at screenshots, you might be forgiven for thinking that Magicka is some sort of top-down, retro-looking PC RPG in the vein of games like Silver. These sorts of games can be confused, thanks to them sharing pre-rendered backdrops as well as a fantasy theme.

It’s sort of hard to describe what Magicka is and make it sound like something you should buy. This isn’t because the game is bad, it’s just that Magicka is more than the sum of its parts, and it’s hard to communicate that, through words or through a review. Magicka is about as fun as you make it and a lot of what makes it fun is subjective to some.

The basic gameplay of Magicka involves moving through a level full of enemies, in a Wizard-posse, and defeating them with spells made from different elements. Everyone has certain elements such as water, earth, fire and arcane etc. Combing these elements together, can create different spells to unleash upon the enemies. Some spells can be earned and picked up throughout the adventure, and require a very precise amount of different elements in order to work. Some can simply be discovered through experimentation. The game, as stated, doesn’t play like an RPG, but doesn’t exactly play like some sort of action game either. If you want to not kill your entire team, you’ll have to plan very carefully and make sure the coast is clear before unleashing a massive spell...but who wants to do that?

The funnest parts of Magicka is when you completely forget to do those things, throw caution to the wind and decide to conjure a bolt of lightening which has a 50/50 chance of killing one of your friends...and then having it kill one of your friends. Reviving fallen comrades is easy, so death doesn’t carry the heaviest of consequences, but it can sometimes be pretty funny.

The game tries, sincerely hard, to make the player laugh and have a good time, whether it’s through its frequent, yet tasteful, use of Pop-culture references. Or just from the funny sounding language and voice-overs, which all of the NPCs use to talk to you. This game is definitely a satirical game, with its tongue glued inside its cheek. Some may find that appealing. Some might not.

The game features an adventure mode as well as horde modes, all of which are fun and can be greatly expanded upon with DLC. The amount of DLC content for Magicka is quite large, but if you’re not after any cosmetic DLC for your Wizard, then most of the good stuff can be brought for very little? lot of money. There has also been a PvP mode added in for free...a very nice gesture for such a small indie team.

Verdict

 

Magicka is a great example of an Indie game which is more than the sum of its parts. The game is simple to pick up, but deep enough to entertain you for a long time, whether you’re alone or part of a group. The game’s multiplayer is unpredictable and fun enough for you and your friends to just put on, and enjoy to the point where it becomes something you don’t really need to think about. Whilst the number of players in game multiplies the fun accordingly.

All in all Magicka offers a fun experience which is well worth its price tag and the price tag of its DLC, most of which is cosmetic and unnecessary to enjoy the game, but well done and nice to have nonetheless. A great indie game which is well worth your time and money and the time and money of your friends.

Case Review

  • Accessible: Simple yet deep
  • Multiplayer: An awesome multi-player experience
  • Comedy: Great sense of humour
  • Repetitive: Some might find the game repetitive
  • Story: Story is a little on the short side
4
Score: 4/5
A cheap, tongue in cheek indie romp as addictive as it is fun.

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