bound by flame

 

Bound by Flame takes a bold foray into a genre populated by multi-million dollar funded competitors. Produced by “Spiders”, a small developer populated by French RPG veterans, the game doesn’t do that badly on its own. Although it is barely worthwhile to play, it doesn’t particularly shine in any area. This is quite possibly the biggest fault with this game. The game follows the standard RPG game structure such as Mass Effect and Dragon Age. This in itself isn’t a problem if all the other aspects of the game weren’t so generic.

What “Spiders” should of done as a small developer is strengthen the aspects of Bound by Flame that isn’t necessarily affected by money, such as story, combat control, variety of enemies, and more, to make up for such as the likes of lack of extraordinary music, amazing cinematics and visual design. It seems that they were only interested in making a game, not a great game. Or, maybe they’re only interested in the money. Or, perhaps their imagination is limited.

The story’s premise is somewhat interesting. It immediately sets up the main character, Vulcan, as the hero. The one and only person with fire powers against the icy overlords threatening world destruction. Okay, great. The problem is that nothing happens afterward that really shows the need for the fire demon inside of Vulcan. You start off in the temple where you get your powers. You regroup at a village in the swamp. You decide to go to the Elf city to find the king and raise up an army (which you don’t see). You go to one of the Ice Lord’s lair. You enter the Worldheart, defeat some random demon who you don’t even hear about until then. The End. Details, details. There’s an extreme lack of details that make the story so uninteresting. The heart of any RPG is the story, and the lack of thereof kills this game. However, one controversial strong point is the dialogue. Vulcan has his/her own charming in its own way, sarcastic, and spunky way of talking. Although, the conversations are superficial at best.

Visually, the aesthetics are mediocre. I wasn’t expecting much since “Spiders” is a small developer. But, the lack of variety in designs was simply boring. Fighting the same kind of monster for the 1,000,000th time is not fun. The music wasn’t amazing either. Nothing special.

Again, a mediocre combat system. You have the power of a fire demon and to use it to its fullest extent you have to level up a fire magic skill tree. Otherwise, you’re just an ordinary warrior or rogue. In actual combat, the targeting system only works if the foe is directly in front of you. So, if someone is hacking at your back, you have to pause the game, turn around, target, and then fight. This whole process slows down the game. And when in combat mode, the environment such as trees can block pretty much your entire field of view, leading to multiple deaths and multiple restarts. The whole thing is just plain awkward to wield.

bound_by_flame_4

 

Overall, the incoherent story and haphazard combat system drag this game down. For $40.00, I would find a better game to play.

Look for more games at steampowered.com.

2.5/5

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