Some studios would have you believe that the best way to impress gamers might be to have bombastic set pieces, incredible visuals, or bosses so challenging you just have to keep trying and failing to beat them. The Might Quest for Epic Loot doesn't possess any of these, but rather aims to keep players castle crawling to do exactly what the title says, and it works.
Mighty Quest for Epic Loot could be described as an isometric, third-person click fest that has you taking your standard knight, mage, archer, or axe wielding medieval Gothic punk, and clicking your mouse until the lovely little enemy loot piñatas explode with their rewards and you move on to claim the castles “loot room”. While not a complicated or convoluted concept, Mighty Quest doesn't aim to overwhelm players in any aspects, but delivers depth on many fronts.
The loot collected throughout your journey comes in the form of gold and life force, both of which will benefit your own castle creation, a feature that certainly changes the landscape of the game, and creates numerous reasons to stay invested in the title. The beginning of the game is easy enough, showing you the ropes and helping the player understand the core concepts behind what to do with your gold, and how to upgrade your character and castle. The tutorial shows you the basics of character progression, equipping the found items like new weapons, accessories, and armors, and gives a good peek at what you need to do to be successful in the land of Opulnecia.
Shortly after completing the brief tutorial, players are free to attack any castle they please. This is where the core gameplay differs from most in Mighty Quest. A player is granted their own castle, from which they can launch attacks against other castles generated by the game, or by other users. An attack is not so much a siege or warfare setup, as it is more of a selection of which castle to enter, and attempt to clear of various enemies ranging from spiders to giants. Some of the most interesting aspects of the game are seeing what other players will come up with, just to keep their gold squarely in their loot chests.
Castle creation and maintenance provides a surprising amount of a depth and replayability that might not be expected upon launching the game and fighting through the first few dungeons. We found that there was a good amount of planning and tactical awareness going in to the design of our castle, traps, and summoned beasts that we placed, to ensure that other players would not have an easy go at our castle heart. This is the core anxiety inducing element of Might Quest, in that you know someone will try to attack your castle, and you know that they will kill a few of your poor little “derps”. You also know that if you place this mine just right, and this fire trap at the right angle, you can trap them and finish them off. This all sounds well and good until everything you worked on is sidestepped by the gap you left between the wall and your mine’s effective range, and you choke on the sour taste of defeat as a stranger runs off with your gold.
Mighty Quest could also be described as unique in that the game’s sense of humor and art style are a perfect fit: poking fun at the genre, while also just being plain charming in all aspects of it's delivery. It was cool to see our punk-goth girl play her giant scythe like a guitar, or throw up devil horns, while surrounded by dead skeletons. The characters will spout context specific lines much more entertaining than "blue elf needs health" and can provide a bit of polarity to the hectic combat. The humor is present where it needs to be and doesn't seem to be forcing anything down your throat or trying too hard either. You see creature names like “derp” and Snott Killgram that might go unnoticed by most just clicking on the enemies to kill them quickly, but do provide a subdued sense of detail and thought in the design. These slight plays or nods to other works are endearing, and make the air leave your nostrils at a slightly quicker rate than normal.
While Mighty Quest for Epic Loot isn't going to take home any prizes for graphical fidelity or exceptional narrative, it doesn't aim to, nor does it want to. Mighty Quest does what it does very well, being a dungeon crawler that gives players healthy rewards for continuing their quest. Mighty Quest is also one of the best examples of how to do Free to Play and the ever controversial microtransactions correctly. The game doesn't punish you for not paying for more gold or currency, you can absolutely have a great time in the game without paying real world money. The motivation to spend money would come from your enjoyment of the game, and rest assured, you’ll get that.
Joe also puts more opinion oriented articles on Hip Fire Gaming, a site he co-founded in order to progress the idea of positivity and dialogue about gaming, along with quick snippet news stories on the Hip Fire YouTube.