That of Icarus has always been one of my favorite myths and I admit that I used it even perhaps more than I should have during my years as an editor. The charm of this novella, and of all the meanings and messages of which it is intrinsic and full of, is in fact undeniable, as are also countless cases in which it is possible to use it as a metaphor. How not to mention, for example, in this sense the all in all recent Dolmen, an ambitious souls-like in space that has seen its wings burn well before even approaching the sun. In short, aiming beyond one's own abilities is not always a wise path: it will be successful The Last Oriccru, the debut title of the Czech GoldKnights, to make this lesson his own or will his wax limbs melt shortly after take-off?
We reviewed the game with the following PC:
- GPU: Zotac RTX 3070 Twin Edge OC
- MOBO: Asus ROG STRIX Z370-F
- RAM: G.Skill Trident Z RGB 16GB DDR4 3200MHz
- CPU: Intel i5 8600k 3.6 GHZ
- SSD: Sabrent SSD 2TB Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280
- Keyboard: Corsair K70 LUX LED Rosso Cherry MX Brown
- Mouse: Fnatic Flick 2
- Headphones: Logitech G930
- Monitor: Samsung C27HG 70 Quad HD 144Hz HDR
The architect of his own fortune
The Last Oricru is, as defined by its creators, an action RPG with a non-linear narrative experience, i.e. strongly conditioned by the player's choices. Some decidedly high-sounding premises, but which to be honest are all in all respected by the game. But let's go in order.
GoldKnights' work puts us in the shoes of Silver, a human endowed with the incredible possibility of being able to come back to life once dead, in the midst of a real civil war. On the one hand we have in fact i Naboru, the dominant race responsible for the flourishing of Wardenia, the planet where the events of the title take place, while on the other Ratkins, warlike half-rat half-human beings forced to live as slaves by the Naboru and ready to rebel against their yoke. A third uncomfortable faction is that of Bsmoking Army, composed of mysterious and powerful beings driven by even more cryptic motivations and an unceasing thirst for blood. A political-social framework, in short, particularly variegated, where there is neither yin nor yang and of which we will be the classic tip of the balance.
Throw yourself into the middle of this scenario, which amalgamates together fantasy scenarios with sci-fi elements, we will therefore find ourselves making choices that will push us towards certain factions and against others, with the classic system of affinity points that will be assigned to us based on our decisions. In the end, everything convinces, with the narrative crossroads that are proposed to us that are actually such and not mere decoys. Embracing one faction or another, as well as completing or not certain tasks, has in fact well thought out impacts within the game ecosystem, with allies in a walkthrough who can, for example, become insidious bosses in other games and so on. A gaming system, let's understand each other, from this point of view certainly not very extensive, but capable of giving away narrative bifurcations worthy of the name and a narrative that composes based on the player's choices. In short, the promises of The Last Ocricru for a non-linear narrative experience can therefore be said to be respected.
The Last Oricru, between cooperative and technical problems
If GoldKnights' first work therefore convinced me on the narrative side, giving me the feeling of being the architect of my destiny, on the gameplay side The Last Ocricru unfortunately leaves the side exposed to more than one criticism. The game boasts a structure from resolutely traditional action-RPG, contaminated by some now inevitable souls-like influence, which however lacks not only that quid that triggers the spark, but also a complete basic cleaning. The animations are in fact woody and not very harmonious, the revisable menus and the combat system not exactly polished.
The clashes with the various opponents often translate into uncoordinated ballets, in which our enemies are able to unnaturally rotate on themselves and hit us in absolutely unpredictable ways. Such woodiness and little harmony of the clashes is a real shame, as in reality The Last Oricru is endowed with a combat system with valid foundations. In fact, to the classic souls-like dynamics, such as parrying, dodging and so on, special powers of the individual weapons/shields and spells are added, including some exclusive to the cooperative mode.
One of the strengths of the title is in fact the possibility of playing it in the company of an ally, who does not intervene in the narrative choices but who will assist us in the various clashes, even locally with lots of split-screen. A mechanic that gives an extra boost to the game, also considering how it is not necessary to have the same level nor the same progress in the game to be able to collaborate. Not bad are the spells mentioned above, i.e. those exclusive to this mode, such as the possibility of creating a sort of lightning chain between the two players. In short, some not bad gimmicks, which give a greater uniqueness to the title. Too bad, however, that, as mentioned above, the general cleanliness of the gameplay is far from optimal.
Even on a technical level, as you can easily see from these images, The Last Oricru is not particularly impressive, even resulting in arrears. We understand very well that it is a production not able to fight on equal terms with a triple A, and God forbid, but was it not appropriate to focus on a style capable of doing greater justice to the title?