Review

When we started the review for Hunted: Demon’s Forge, we thought we only had negative things to say about the game. However, in the interest of fairness, we continued playing past the rather dull and tedious intro mission (which turns out to be a prelogue to the main story) and once we got in to the main game we found ourselves more interested.

The game starts off with some rather poor graphics and confusing intro where you see a man in armour fighting a huge mythical creature before then introducing you to a very pale female who appears from a portal and talks about her father, some crystals and a plot. Its pretty dull stuff and in all honesty, our attention was wavering even at this early stage.

We then got to start playing (we’re skipping the pointless pre-story level) as either one of two characters: E’lara (an elf) and Caddoc, a human warrior. Hunted: Demon’s Forge is quite unique in so far as at certain points throughout each level you can swap which character you are playing as. We tended to play as Caddoc for the most part so we could get up close and personal with the enemies and the missions didn’t really vary because of it. Its a nice feature though and as E’lara tends to mostly prefer the ranged attacks with a bow and arrow, the attacking style does vary between characters.
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Hunted: Demon’s Forge is meant to be played as a multiplayer experience though, with one player in control of E’lara (providing distance cover) while the other is Craddoc (getting the heavy duty hits in). This works reasonably well and is a totally different experience than as single player. There’s no replicating a human player’s style with the AI which, at times, can be dreadful and be of no help at all meaning you will suffer a load of health damage or wasted Mana trying to fend off half a dozen enemies while the computer controlled character is frantically attacking 1 lone enemy way off in the distance with completely the wrong weapon.

So apart from bland plots and dated graphics, we were also put off by cheesy dialogue (although some of it is tongue-in-cheek) and really poor animation on the main characters when they were speaking. At one stage Caddoc moves his mouth open and closed like a fish!

But then after we had been playing for a few hours we realised we were getting in to it a bit more and were actually keen to see what the next dungeon held in store for us, or what the next wave of enemies could come at us with.
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Its fair to say that some thought has gone in to Hunted: Demon’s Forge. Not only is the character swap a nice feature to have, but the levels are divided into sub sections which break the game up nicely and also have a few puzzle-quests dotted around. These puzzles take shape by way of Death Stones and dead bodies you will see (glowing green when you near them). Interact with one of these bodies and a ghostly apparition will appear and cryptically give something away about nearby treasure or a heads up on the next lot of enemies. Your task is then to either find the secret room with the treasure or to know how to beat the next wave of enemies/sub boss. This means finding the secret rooms or listening to the tips is worthwhile and makes you want to play more of the game rather than blitzing from one level to the next.

Finding more weapons or improved armour also encourages you to look in the less-obvious spots and the upgrades to your characters is clever, allowing you to assign powers to either character at any time in order to compliment your own playing style. We also liked the power ups that were unlocked with various progression-based tasks such as making a certain amount of joint kills would grant additional health slots, etc.

Overall we struggled to say whether we enjoyed playing Hunted Demons Forge or not. It has some unique and interesting features but lacks in other areas that really drag it down at times. Playing with a friend is definately better than solo play but there are better multiplayer games available.

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