Indie Game Review: Doom & Destiny

Do you guys happen to remember a small thing last year called the Indie Game Summer Uprising on Xbox Live? If you don’t, here’s the premise: a different Indie game was released every day for over a week. I looked at the titles and the one that really caught my eye was Doom & Destiny. It’s an RPG following four guys as they’re dragged involuntarily into a different dimension. While I haven’t finished the game yet, I’ve dedicated a few hours to this game, so I thought I’d give you guys a bit of info about it.

It controls like your average JRPG, the battles are turn-based and the order of attack is influenced by the characters’ speed. When a character levels up, you’re able to spread 3 points across four categories however you see fit. Each category affects two characteristics about the character. As you assign points to those categories, they increase the respective characteristics. You also have to assign a party leader, and based on which one you choose, the party will have the opportunity to receive different bonuses based on their position in battle. There are only 3 positions: back, middle, and forward. Suppose the dextrous character is in charge (as he is in my game), then any character you position in the back receives a boost to resistance, but looses a little bit of critical hit chance. Position them in the front and it’s vice versa. You don’t have to position anyone in the back or front though, you can have them all stand in the middle and receive no boost and therefore no loss.

The items are the same you’d see in most RPGs, there are healing items of various values, items to restore life, status effects (sleeping, burnt, bleeding out, etc), magic power, both health and magic together, generic stuff like that. There is also a plethora of weapons, armour, and accessories (they can increase some other characteristics besides strength, health, and speed). Just as in most RPGs, when you defeat enemies in battle, you get experience and money, although one interesting thing about Doom and Destiny is that the higher a character’s dexterity category is, the more experience they get per battle.

The humour in this game is downright amazing. There are video game references all over this game, the fourth wall is cracked a couple of times, and the way the characters interact (main characters and NPCs alike) is incredibly entertaining. Whether it’s going to save a princess from a tower only to see a young man in all green, with pointy ears, and blonde hair come running from the tower saying “Wrong princess… my bad,” or listening to the king explain to you how you were chosen to become heroes, this game is packed with moments that will make you chuckle.

Unfortunately, every now and then I come across a spelling error within some of the dialogue. It hasn’t been too horrendous, and I really do mean every now and then. It’s not prominent, I only encountered a handful of errors during my playthrough, but it’s still something that’s a little disappointing to see. I’m not sure if it’s because of the TV I have or because of how the game was made, but I find that the bottom half-inch or so of the screen is chopped off. It’s not a big deal, I just find it strange because I’ve never had that problem before on this TV (which is why I’m more inclined to think it’s the way the game was made). The only time you really notice it is when you’re trying to read some dialogue and you can only see the top half of the bottom line and it becomes a bit of a struggle to read. Outside of that, if you’re heading south through a part of the world, it can be tricky since there may only be one square you can travel through and not being able to see the fences or rocks blocking your way makes it a little tricky at times.

Speaking of the world, you can enter towns, towers, dungeons, all the usual stuff, but the overworld is like the dinosaur world from Earthbound. By that, I mean your character is small and walking around the world. You can see the cities and dungeons you can enter, but you’re also walking through forests and open field. What makes the world more interesting is that the battles are random encounters. It’s not like in Pokemon where it’s only certain areas where you’ll be attacked. You can be attacked anywhere that isn’t populated with people. If you’re in a town, a mage’s tower, a bridge that acts as an imperial checkpoint, or something else along those lines, you’re in no danger. However, if you’re anywhere else, be it the overworld, a forest on your way to a dungeon, or in a cave, you can be attacked. Walking through a forest or tall grass also doubles the chance of you being engaged in battle.

I would love to talk more about specific instances of humour or the little things that make me love this game, but I wouldn’t want to ruin the fun for anyone in discovering it all for themselves. I definitely recommend this game to fans of RPGs and with a sense of humour and some knowledge of video games. Of course, you don’t need those things to enjoy the game, they will simply enhance the experience. Besides, it’s only 240 MS points (or $3 in real world money).

Score: 7/10

Eric is an avid fan of old school RPG’s and humour in his games. He is also an editor for Analog Addiction where you can find all the latest gaming news, previews, reviews, and everything else that rhymes with those words. ‘Like’ Analog Addiction on Facebook to receive all of the updates as they’re posted.

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