Armored Devil is the latest project from Castle Paradox member BlastedEarth. It’s not too often that an OHRRPGCE game (in my experience) can completely immerse you in the world and make you think that you are actually there. Armored Devil does an amazing job of this, but I couldn’t help but feel that some things were still missing from the equation as a whole.
The world that Armored Devil takes place in is unique for an OHRRPGCE game, and can be quite refreshing to those who are a little tired of seeing the classic medieval RPG setting. Set in a hellish dimension, demons run rampant and hunger for power to control the underworld and the living. As you can imagine, its equally dark and dreary from a cosmetic perspective. BlastedEarth definitely has a unique artistic style and it really shines here. The landscape and sprites are done extremely well, and the cutscenes (often animated, some seem to be hand drawn as well) are also great.
The soundtrack was drawn from multiple OHRRPGCE artists, and BlastedEarth gives them credit in the game’s notes. I felt that the pieces couldn’t have been placed any better and help set the mood even more. The combat sound effects are good as well, but I can see where the some of them effects could get pretty annoying in time (the hero’s default attack comes to mind). Overall though, the sound is superb.
Then we get to the story and dialogue; which to me is a double edged sword. I think that it was all written well (despite the spelling mistake in the very first textbox), but it just seemed like there was too much information to process and not enough time to do it. Don’t get me wrong, I do realize that terms, places and other things have to be brought up in dialogue, especially when you are trying to immerse the player in your world. I just don’t think that the flow is quite right. Some of the text during certain events just seem way too wordy and throw out too many terms for you to keep up with and remember.
Ironically, there are times when I felt that there was not enough text. A great example is the town that you come to on the first map. I thought it was cool that you don’t actually get to see the town physically, but rather you get multiple text options that are actual areas of the town that you can explore in dialogue form. Unfortunately, some of the options given leave you scratching your head. These could very well just not be fully implemented, but the author could have at least warned you if that was the case.
I also became a little confused about the story itself. When you start out its not so bad, but I think it definitely suffers from information overload the more you progress; making it difficult to follow. The only other thing that bothered me a little was the battle frequency, but I believe that the author has already decided to fix this in a future update.
I think Armored Devil has the potential to be a really great game. It has an outstanding atmosphere, great graphics, and a fitting soundtrack. From what I can understand about the story I do like, but I seriously think that the pacing needs to be evened out or perhaps some things be re-worded. A explanation on some of the options given in towns and such would be cool too (the camo thingy comes to mind). If you’re looking for something a little different and that shows some promise, check it out. I know that I’ll be following BlastedEarth’s progress on this one.