Hunter: Alliance

Developer: Gameloft
Publisher: Ubisoft
Release Date: February 14, 2012
Available On: PS3 and Vita

Last year’s Dungeon Siege III was my first major foray into the dungeon crawling genre. I know, I know – Diablo fans are going to cry foul, but it is not a slight to their vaunted franchise so much as it is a misplaced lack of interest on my part. I quickly found in Dungeon Siege III how awesome these games can be. The question is: will they work on the PlayStation Vita? The short answer is yes. Running around killing zombies and bandits can be an exciting enterprise. I also found that it works surprisingly well in short bursts of play – just like you would expect from a portable game. Extended sessions are where the game gets a little iffy, leading to my expanded answer, which is that Dungeon Hunter: Alliance has its share of problems. To start off, the story is decidedly lacking. You play as a dead king woken up from his peaceful time in the afterlife by a verbose fairy. The queen has gone a bit mad and the entire empire has fallen into disrepair. Your job is to put the pieces back together.

The game allows you to do this through three different basic paths that you will find in most games of this type: mage, rogue and warrior. Beyond that don’t expect a slew of customization features because they don’t exist in the game. You do, however, decide what types of abilities you wish to acquire through each new experience level that your character attains. These include boosts to armor, special attacks, the ability to carry more potions and other helpful tools. The action itself is fine aside from an occasional lag spike from too many on-screen enemies. I would go so far as to say that it is somewhat addictive. For all of its benefits, though, there are drawbacks. A lot of the levels seem to repeat. They are so generic in their design that it reminds me of those custom packs for a Blizzard game from the 90s with cookie cutter environments. In the end of the day Dungeon Hunter: Alliance is nothing more than an expensive port of a $12 PSN game.

While there is plenty of action to be had and loot to collect, the overall package is decidedly generic and the quality mediocre. It tries to be a game like Dungeon Siege III and it’s not. Perhaps you can consider a buy when it comes down to price parity with the PS3 version of the game.

Graphics: 6
Sound: 6
Gameplay: 7.5
Creativity: 6
Replay Value/Game Length: 8
Final: 7 out of 10

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