Friday, April 20, 2012

Swords & Sorcery EP: The stuff of magic

Truly the Gods keep me in their favor.

When Swords & Sorcery EP released last year for the iOS it was a game that really sparked an interest for me. Not only was it visual interesting, but it stirred a bit of nostalgia for the games I grew up with as a kid.

Before getting my hands on a "Family Game" console or my 2nd hand Nintendo, I used to spend hours watching my uncles play games on their Commodore, at one point they even had a gaming machine that had the games on cassette tapes. Aside from just the look of the game, it was the feeling of awe that I felt as a kid that came back to me while reading up on of Swords & Sorcery EP.

It felt like a grand adventure in the purest sense - if that makes sense.

Like a story you tell a kid. It's not about scary bosses or blood shed. The hero is not tormented or out for revenge. In fact there's very little back story to the whole thing.

Ok wait - I'm getting a head of myself here. Let me first tell you something else that was pretty cool.

The other day I came across a nice wall paper for Swords & Sorcery EP and looking at it really made me want to play it. so I started looking around to see if there might be some sort of emulator or something for it on the PC. I asked a friend of mine (when I should have just asked Google) and he said that he didn't know. Then after going through a few screens of the game I got back to work.

Then I saw on my Twitter feed a share from which announced the release of Swords and Sorcery EP on Steam.

Truly the Gods keep me in their favor.

After freaking the fak out I asked if my friend could pick up the game for me, as I don't have a credit card of my own yet (though I should really follow up on that)

So he bought it as a gift, I freaked out even more and then I had the enormous task of making it through the day so that I could fly home to play it.

To simply put it; Swords and Sorcery EP is a wonderful game. That feels so strange for me to say out loud because I don't I use the word "Wonderful" to describe things too often. Everything's either "Mad awesome" or "Farking cool" - but there is nothing better to describe the game.

You play a lone Scythian who is traveling on a quest. A long the way you meet a few people and after a bit of chit chat you discover that there is a terrible storm coming. I really don't want to talk about the plot too much, but know that there are dark slumbering spirits to wake up, ancient artifacts to discover and an adventure to be had.

The controls are very simple, you use the two mouse buttons and click to move or right click to enter into combat. But like the simple pixels the game uses to build its beautiful world, the equally simple control mechanics give way to some exciting game play.

Boss fights involve dodging light beams and hurl back projectiles with your sword, and exploring is all about venturing for the sake of venturing, because though you do get a few nods as to what you need to do now and then, a lot of the game is you having to find out things for yourself.

And even with such simple mechanics, none of it is short of amazing. The feeling of awe and even a dark feeling of dread at times that the game invokes is amazing. Even the combat though point and click, is exciting and epic.

Aside from the very beautiful graphics and charming characters, the music that scores your adventure is the stuff of magic, and is in fact one of the strongest parts of the game. I read one reviewer somewhere say that he wanted Jim Guthrie, the games music composer to "score his life". If only such things were possible. I guess the closest thing would be that the Steam copy actually comes with the OST for the game and I've been waking up to it since I got it.

For some reason the game reminds me of the show Adventure Time as well - though I can't really say why. But it's that kind of adventure. Where everything is wonderful... even the baddies that are out to get you - I was awed by them because it just felt like you had stumbled in on something a lot bigger than you in a cosmic sense..

To simply read about the game and see the screens is only a glimpse at the magic. This is truly something that needs to be played to be appreciated - and even the the video that follows barely captures the awesomeness of it.

You can check out reviews for the game here.

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