The Cursed Crusade is a fantasy action adventure game that i had my eye on for some time. Reason being ATLUS is publishing it and most games they publish are usually gold. So when i saw the demo sitting in the PSN store i swooped through like a pterodactyl and downloaded it. The Cursed Crusade was developed by Kylotonn and published by Atlus Co for the PC, Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. It releases October 25, 2011.
The demo is about a half hour in length and gives you some story and combat during that time length. The main menu features the two protagonists Dennis and Esteban at a bonfire. Immediately you get a “this is a dark fantasy knight game” vibe. Two main menu options are Launch the Demo and Options. You can select to add another controller if you want to play the demo in co-op mode. I played it by myself. The demo starts off with the protagonists assaulting the castle Biren. The year is 1199. There are plenty of in-game cutscenes, voiced narration from disembodied voices as well from the protagonists which ultimately fleshes out the story.
To breach the castle and get past the archers Dennis and Estabon are paired up to push a wooden fortification close to the castle gate. Taking cover with R2 lets you avoid arrows and LS (forward) pushes the fortification forward. Next is a scene where you take control of Dennis and take out archers with a crossbow. The aiming and zoom was kinda clunky at first. Then i realized there was aim assist which helped. Next, using a battering ram and some QTE’S we breached the gate in which the real combat now begins.
The Cursed Crusade gives the player options in combat. You can mix and match weapon types in different slots. I fought with a barbarion sword and mace (duel wield) early on. Later i switched to a shield and sword combo. You can use your crossbow if you like as well. You change weapon combinations with the d-pad. The combat is brutal and features QTE’S for finishers. Many weapons are dropped by enemies which allows you to mix and match what set ups you want to equip. The combat itself is average to good. The camera acts weird and out of frame on occasion. One thing i will say is that the combat is brutal.
As you perform combat moves with different weapons in The Cursed Crusade you will eventually unlock techniques for specific weapons. There is also a scoring system related to combat. I guess you can call them combostreaks. When you get combos your awarded bonuses. I obtained the Paladin 20+ hits and Champion 30+ hits in a row combo bonuses. It was easy i wasn’t even trying and i played the demo on Knight difficulty for the record. After some light co-op objectives and making your way up the castle a boss battle ensues. After you defeat him your shown the curses of Dennis and Esteban which in turn the demo concludes.
Some things of note from playing through The Cursed Crusade demo. The atmosphere is good. Its dark with some light humor between the protagonists. The dark rain soaked land was meticulously crafted with nice texture work. There was no glitches unless the camera gets glitched at certain angles while fighting. The sound design was good and immersed you in the battle. The writing and voice actors were decent as well and kept me interested. The Cursed Crusade seems like its going to be a good game but rough around the edges. Well that is my prediction anyways. Thanks for reading.