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  Hamumu Revumu: Of Orcs And Men 11:39 AM -- Sat August 22, 2015  

Of Orcs And Men

TL;DR: A linear action-strategy-RPG, with stealth action... yeah, it's different!

Gameplay Gist: This game surprised me multiple times. From the trailer videos that made me buy it, I expected a normal action-RPG: slash at the monsters with your sword. It is not that, the videos are lying. Rather, the combat is in real-time, but you can slow time waaaayyyy down to issue orders to your two guys. But that's not all. Before you get into a fight, you can sneak up on guys and backstab them in typical stealth-game style (avoid line-of-sight, avoid dogs since they can smell you, the usual things), so there are less guys to fight when you do reach a point where two guys are facing each other so you can't avoid being seen. The entire game is totally linear (minus the ability to take on a few side missions or not), you just play one level after another, where you traverse from one end to the other, killing everything on the way. But it is fun to do that!

Kombat Kuality: The fighting, once I actually understood it (which was not during the incredibly vague tutorial, but rather a few fights later as I pieced it together), is actually quite fun. There's hardly any variety to it, you'll pick a couple of things and really stick to them, but it's satisfying to have the big guy taunting everybody onto him and laying down AOE smacks while the little guy is tossing daggers at specific targets. Even more fun is that the big guy can throw the little guy at enemies for huge damage or to get him up to archers you can't otherwise reach. So, don't go in expecting a hack n' slash like I did, but if you expect a real-time tactical battle where you are giving orders to two different units, you should have fun with that.

Story Stupid? The story was alright. This is an extremely profane game. The writing was not done by a native English speaker, and it shows sometimes as they awkwardly insert F-bombs in places where they really don't belong, but boy do they like inserting them. In the end, I was compelled to find out what would happen. Like I said, it's totally linear so there's really not much to consider, you just sort of travel through this storybook, fighting the words on each page to get through. But it's a decent story, about Orcs having been enslaved for a long time and the underground among them fighting for freedom, and of course various political maneuvers. And it has a nice small, realistic feeling, story-wise. You don't travel the world seeking the parts of the Chalice Of Power to defeat a dark wizard, you really do a small enough thing that it's feasible that two guys could be doing it (and even then, you require the help of a lot of other people), and yet it does have international, possibly world-changing, repercussions. Pretty well-done now that I think about it.

Wrapid Wrap-Up: This is not a AAA game. It shows, with some clunky quality issues, but if you can respect the effort of the indies who made it, it's really actually well-done in many ways. It's almost too good to not be AAA, except it's definitely not good enough to be AAA. If that makes sense. All in all, in many ways, it's not what I expected for sure, but in the end I just kept going because I was having a lot of fun. It's also pretty short, which I totally appreciate. That's what I want in a game.
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