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Dungeon Hunter 2 Review
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Dungeon Hunter 2, Gameloft’s follow-up RPG title, is now available from the app store. Offering much of the same great gameplay that we saw in the previous iteration, Dungeon Hunter 2 also manages to slip in some nice improvements to bring us another terrific RPG option that should appeal to hardcore fans as well as usher in a new era of players.

Dungeon Hunter 2 Pros:

  • Exciting action RPG experience
  • Beautiful graphics with lighting and shading effects
  • Movie score quality soundtrack
  • Responsive controls
  • Lengthy story mode with varied environments and expansive maps
  • Multiplayer co-op mode via local and online wi-fi

Dungeon Hunter 2 Cons:

  • Some environmental objects (trees) tend to obscure the view
  • Character menu can be a bit overwhelming for new players
  • Easy to get lost, despite access to the map

As with most RPGs, you start the game at a low level, with bare bones equipment and mediocre skills. You are given the option to play as one of three class types: Warrior, Rogue, or Mage. Each can be further pigeonholed into a more specialized role under the main umbrella. This, of course, dictates the type of role you take, weapons you use, and skills you hone. You awake in a dank dungeon, locked in a giant bird cage. Sprung from your prison by a priest and fairy, you reluctantly follow them when you learn that your brother has taken control of Gothicus and is leading it down an evil path. It is up to you to put on your hero pants and lead the resistance in order to save Gothicus and defeat the evil that lies within your sibling.

The world you inhabit is bigger this time around, with a plethora of areas to explore, enemies to fight, and quests to complete. Quests are of a more pertinent variety in Dungeon Hunter 2 than in some RPGs we’ve played. Whereas many quests can feel like busy work that sees you collecting a number of items or creating a number of potions, these quests involve defeating certain enemies or retrieving certain items that will further your progress through the game. Treasure chests abound, offering you gold and other items that can be used to enhance your stats and provide improved abilities when equipped. You can spend a great deal of time tweaking your setup or simply tap the auto-equip button to let the game outfit your character with the best available equipment. The use of fairies for magical intervention remains intact, with each focused on the elements: fire, earth, water, air, and lightning. You can equip one at a time to aid in defeating foes. As you progress and eliminate those who mean you harm, you earn experience points and level up your character. Character points can be applied to strength, dexterity, endurance, or energy. Other points can be applied to both active and passive abilities to give you an edge in gameplay, much like the first version of the game.

The character menu offers you the easy ability to tweak and swap to your heart’s content. The first section outlines your character stats and the second allows you to examine your inventory and make your equipment changes. Your skills and specializations are tweaked in the third section and the fairy selection is in the fourth section. Your quest journal allows you to see which quests you are currently attempting to fulfill, as well as select which should be your main quest. The map gives you a look at the land and pertinent info regarding your main quest. You can quickly switch between this menu and the actual game by tapping on your image in the upper left corner. Navigating the world is experienced from a top-down view, giving you a good look at the surrounding area. Attacking enemies involves button-mashing when a red circle appears at the feet of a foe, indicating that he is the target. Your health regenerates when you are not in battle, with a visual indicator in the upper left corner. There is also a mana indicator, which is important for casting spells and using special abilities. It’s important to keep an eye on these when in battle to be sure that you don’t lose lives. Available health potions are accessed from the upper right corner. Battles are fast and furious, so you must remain alert and nimble.

Graphically, everything about the world of Gothicus looks amazing. The environments are highly detailed, the lighting and shading effects are utilized well, and the colors really pop. There are a number of buttons on screen, but they never feel obtrusive. A virtual pad in the lower left corner offers fluid movement in all directions. Additionally, you can choose to forgo the virtual pad for tap-to-move controls, where you touch the spot on the screen where you want to go. The context-specific, button (used to attack, talk, manipulate depending on the situation), fairy button, and special ability button are on the right, offering good responsiveness when tapped. The soundtrack is impressive, providing movie score quality audio as the backdrop for this epic tale. The sound effects are plentiful and crisp, enhancing the immersive experience with clanging swordplay, squishy footsteps, whizzing arrows, and all of the other little details that you’d expect.

Replay value is terrific, as playing with any of the three classes and two specialized classes offers a different experience. The lengthy game should keep you entertained for hours, as completing all quests and maxing out your stats is not a simple undertaking. GameCenter and Gameloft Live! integration brings leaderboards and achievements to earn, which can also provide incentive to play again and again. This time around, Gameloft has even included a co-op mode for 2-4 players via local wi-fi and Bluetooth, or online wi-fi. It offers a new experience that can be both enjoyable and helpful, as enhancements achieved in co-op mode are also available in the single-player mode. In all, Dungeon Hunter 2 is an even more compelling title than its previous iteration, without losing a step. Currently on sale for $5.99, we recommend snagging this 4.5-Dimple stunner today.

Dungeon Hunter 2 Review, reviewed by Kevin on 2011-01-01T23:12:18+00:00 rating 4.5 out of 5

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