Not purrfect, but not too bad.
The Metroidvania style of games has slightly gone away from the forefront in the past few years. I have always enjoyed them, and ones that are done right will always get me to play them. Hunter’s Legacy has the right chops for it, but a few decisions and missteps make this game come off a bit bland, even if the execution is well done.
Players take on the role of Ikki, who is the only warrior who can stop a looming evil from corrupting the land. She will have to travel to all different kinds of areas and obtain multiple tools to help her traverse areas she has not visited before. Starting to sound familiar, right? While the story is at a minimum, it doesn’t really matter too much. The gameplay is what takes center stage here.
Platforms: XB1, PS4, PC
Price I’d pay: $6.99
First a foremost, this is a platforming game. There are multiple areas that will require some swift maneuvering in order to succeed. The combat is simple enough. Ikki can slash with her swords, fire arrows from her bow, and dodge roll out of the way of attacks. All of these can be upgraded through exploration and through manual upgrading using money and materials.
The exploration all revolves around going to different locations, either finding a thing blocking the way, or finding the right upgrade or tool to get past said progress blocks. It takes this to a rather simple level while making the actual traversal the real challenge. This is where the real difficulty comes into play. Not only is some of the platforming tricky, but the combat with all the different enemies, especially some of the later ones, can become a difficult task that will require use of every weapon and tool at Ikki’s disposal. Luckily, the controls are tight, responsive, and very well done.
Of course, as much praise I give the game, I can’t forget about the missteps. Visually, I found the game bland, and the music started to wreak havoc on my nerves within an hour. Aesthetics aside, the real issue is the map system. Rather than the traditional mini-map that shows every room of an area, Ikki only has an overworld map. This means, when I reach a new area, I’m just going to have to go in blind and find any branching paths. Then, when I do find them, I’ll need to remember where they are so I can come back to them since the game only shows me what “level” I am currently in. Luckily, there is a fast travel system using portals that are scattered through each level that make it a bit easier to navigate, but backtracking is still here and ends up being a slog in the long run. The boss fights, while imaginative, usually end up devolving to me slashing the crap out of them with maybe a little bit of maneuvering mixed in.
Hunter’s Legacy is not a bad game by any stretch. In fact, there are a lot of games out there that wishes it could control as tight as this one. It’s just not going to blow anyone away with really anything it does. I never disliked my time with it, but the backtracking and lack of a decent map was a disappointment. The great thing is, it’s only $7 and I think at that price point, it’s well worth the asking price. Just keep in mind, it’s most certainly not the best game in the world, but it does control very well.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.