Anyone remember Quest 64? As the PlayStation handily took over the RPG scene in the 32-bit era, Nintendo was left scrounging for something to counter. Until Ocarina of Time came along, Quest 64– an ugly, unfun, and lifeless RPG– was all N64 fans had at their disposal. Years later, we’re now having a severe case of deja vu. Sony’s PSP and the Nintendo DS have a boatload of RPGs in all shapes and sizes, but it’s still slim pickings for the iPhone, and the first truly 3D offering has Quest 64’s stink all over it.
Crusade of Destiny’s story goes something like this: a young boy wakes up in a small village, goes around killing animals in the countryside, and gets involved in a contrived plot to save civilization from the forces of evil. Yawn.
This plot has been done thousands of times, but a heartfelt retelling, rewarding adventures, interesting characters, and sweeping environments go a long way to tug at our heart strings and make us believe we’re experiencing something new. Crusade of Destiny, on the contrary, has none of these things, and it has added problems to boot. Frustrating camera? Check. Muddled textures that slowly disintegrate your vision? You betcha. Endless grinding of the same respawning animals? Okay, maybe that one is an RPG staple, but that doesn’t make it a good thing.
Look out, Treebeard!
The story and dialog are not as epic as the App Store description would have you believe, and it’s easy to make a massive game if it’s not populated with anything. Roaming the wilderness in the Elder Scrolls series, for instance, has always been a lonely experience, but this is downright depressing. You will rejoice at every pack of creatures and village you encounter (composed of two to three houses if you’re lucky) but sob into your phone as the beasts are quickly dispatched or you realize the denizens have as much personality as cardboard.
Combat is split between ranged and close-quarters, neither of which requires any particular skill. We simply opted to fight face to face so that it was easier to collect more meaningless loot.
Can you have fun with this game? Maybe. If repetitive grinding is your thing, you may find an hour or two of enjoyment, but a distinct lack of interesting loot will soon leave you cold. With an overly simplified progression system to boot, there is truly nothing about this game that we could say is done right. For $9.99, you could buy 10 games that would provide you hours more enjoyment than this disappointing, unimpressive, and boring game.