Luckily, the game has many great features and could, one day, feature an MMO-like option. It's also a good choice for those who enjoy games like Drakensang Online or Diablo. But there are some less exciting aspects to the game too, so you know I'll be covering those.
"There's life in the movements of the characters on the screen and real appeal in the combat even though it's from the dungeon-grinder school that I'm normally very fatigued by."
The controls are fluid, something that I appreciate as well. I have wrists that have been beaten by years of drums, art, and gaming, so I cannot really enjoy action-based games as much as I'd like. Akaneiro: Demon Hunter's controls work well and even with all of the click-click-clicking going on, the game provides simple combos and special abilities that do not snap my arm. Yes, clicking to destroy monsters and then gathering massive amounts of loot is the name of this game, as well as the name of many, many other "Diablo-clones" that we've seen in recent years. Some players swear by the formula and love the fact that it's often left alone, wrapped only in a different skin once in a while. Is Akaneiro: Demon Hunters just another one of these clones? Well, basically. Having said that, I have to keep in mind that many players have not yet enjoyed an action-based dungeon crawler yet and so might stumble upon this one first. If so, I can feel good that at least they'll be playing a much more original take on the genre, one filled with amazing art, killer bosses, and tons of loot.
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There will be multiplayer options soon if everything goes to plan. The development team has reached its Kickstarter goal, a much-deserved achievement, but according to the developers who frequent the world chat in-game, the game is nowhere near completed. A player can play with an NPC version of a friend right now, and that friend's character will gain Karma shards, an in-game monetary unit that is used for pretty much everything from upgrading skills to buying equipment. I can only imagine how much cooler the game will be when players can form real-time groups with each other to go smashing through the beautiful scenery, but we'll see.
"I understand that the appeal of the genre is just that -- grinding after gear and tweaking stats to perfection -- but that's never been appealing to me."
Luckily, there are a lot of reasons to stop and smell the flowers in Akaneiro: Demon Hunters. The art design is still the biggest appeal of the game. Even the website is more appealing than most of the ones I see indies put out. The Kickstarter page mentions an Android beta, something I could see truly working out for this game. It's begging for a port to something more portable, and while I was streaming it live, the chat room kept asking for a console version.
Akaneiro: Demon Hunters' combat is about what you might expect from a dungeon-crawling, loot-collecting, monster-killing adventure, but it also throws in such marvelous art, music, and sounds that I can see it being picked up and distributed in many more major venues. It's free-to-play with optional Karma purchases right now, but I'm planning on contributing to the Kickstarter as well. I rarely do that, but I like to reward a team that seems to know that even an indie game must have charm and some bit of polish. Oh, and kickass combat as well. That always helps. The fact that the developers have included a browser-based version alongside a downloadable one is so good. I wish more developers had the ability to do this!
Next week I am switching gears and once again rolling the dice on Dragon's Call, a strange browser-based MMO that looks to be a combination of text-based game, turn-based combat, and open character development. We'll see how it goes by streaming it live on Monday, the 18th of February, at 5:00 p.m. EST, right here on our livestream channel!
Each week on Rise and Shiny, Beau chooses a different free-to-play, indie, or browser-based game and jumps in head-first. It might be amazing or it might be a dud, but either way, he'll deliver his new-player impressions to you. Drop him an email, comment, or tweet!