ORC: Vengeance (universal) from Chillingo, is a dungeon-crawling action RPG with a lot of elements familiar to fans of PC games like Diablo. It’s a technically impressive title with some fun gameplay and equipment to loot, but unforuntately, has a few flaws that might frustrate hardcore fans of the genre.
Like most RPG’s of its kind, the goal in ORC is simple: kill monsters, collect money and equipment, and upgrade skills throughout a long adventure. And as the title alludes to, the story is about a monster named Rok, a war chief on a quest for vengeance. But there isn’t a big, dynamic story line: exposition is mostly told through a series of hidden journals players can find and read throughout the levels.
But most gamers don’t come to dungeon crawlers for the story, they come for the gameplay and the loot. And in both regards, ORC is enjoyable, but largely uninspired. It’s solid and accessible, but lacking in any kind of ingenuity, whether its enemy design, level construction, or skill development. It’s entertaining, but lacks something unique to really separate it from the other counterparts in the genre.
The game does well at creating an uncluttered on-screen UI, although it comes at some sacrifice to the game’s controls. Moving Rok is down with a touch system similar to Diablo, with special attacks and healing potions assigned to four unique touch gestures. Unfortunately, the constant tapping and gesturing during battle can lead to some unwanted moves or use of potions.
ORC’s clean, minimalistic on-screen information and lack of joypad controls put a deliberate emphasis on the game’s crisp, high-definition graphics. Every enemy animation and special attack is smoothly animated and clean, but the stripped color scheme of every level saps the game’s environments from having personality. It all blends together for a forgettable collection of repetitive wall-crumbling animations in a drab blend of dimly-lit dungeons.
Despite the game’s shortcomings, though, ORC: Vengeance (universal) is a solid action RPG with a lot of fun weapons and special abilities to equip throughout. , ORC: Vengeance is worth a look for fans of loot-collecting adventures on console and PC, and for casual gamers who want a more straightforward experience to try out the genre.