The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot (PC) Closed Beta Preview

For my first article here on COG I was given the task to take a look at Ubisofts latest foray into the FTP realm, Mighty Quest for Epic Loot. I’ve been playing the beta pretty solid for the past week and it has a few interesting twists on the normal Action RPG

Mighty Quest for Epic Loot is a casual take on the tried and true “Diablo” formula of point and click action RPGs. Whereas previous games of the action RPG genre aim for generally vast crawls and large open areas Mighty Quest for Epic Loot (Mighty Quest from here on in) is more of a hybrid of Dungeon Keeper and Diablo.  You build a castle to defend against other players who crawl through each other’s castles looting and pillaging. Roughly 20 kinds of evil creatures are at your disposal and their power increases as you level your castle up.  A multitude of traps such as flame statues and tar barrels are also available to assist you in the defence of your castle.

Mighty Quest gives you three class choices: Warrior, Wizard, and Archer. Each class is fairly standard fantasy fair. The mighty warrior cleaves multiple enemies at once while he shrugs off damage; the wizard, although slow, manages to hurl elemental doom from as far away from pointy things as he can; and then there is the archer who runs around debuffing his enemies and shooting from across the room.  Each class has unlockable skills that open up when you level up. There is no choice right now though, and to be honest I don’t really care. Most players quickly figure out what skills work best for them and from the decent variety you are given here this should be no problem. What makes up your character’s skill build is what you have on your quickbar at any given time.

In Mighty Quest, and unlike traditional ARPGs, you don’t have the ability to swap gear or skills while playing through a level. Now before you freak out let me say that the “castles” at this point in the beta generally take 2-5 minutes to finish, so you are not stuck with a crummy skill selection for hours on end. So this presents you with different options for each quick raid you attempt based on the limitation that you only have four bar slots to choose the best skills for what you may encounter. The same goes for your gear, there is no time wasted looking at new loot when it drops, it’s all about getting through the dungeon and then looking at your spoils.

So far Might Quest has been a fairly enjoyable game. Its art style is best compared to the Torchlight series but it is a fair bit more subdued. Right now the variety in tilesets is a bit repetitive but the short nature of play sessions tends to make this less of an issue. I can only assume at some point they will add more tiles and parts for customizing your keep, so at this time it suffices.

The game includes about 20 or so premade castles to sharpen your skills, and I can tell you that you will need them.  Going after the other players at this point in time is a crapshoot at best. Even loaded up with full potions, pretty decent gear, and being a good four levels HIGHER than the dungeon you (or I) may attempt….you will still find that you can get your butt handed to you very quickly. There are some downright nasty, if not broken, combinations of creatures that will have you bashing your head against the keyboard. I am hoping that they get some more of the balance issues sorted out with help of the beta because right now I don’t do a lot of any PVP. There is NO way to know if a dungeon will be challenging or just downright insanely difficult depending on your build and whether the defender has taken advantage of some of the more powerful combos.

It wouldn’t be so annoying if the penalties for loosing on a PC dungeon weren’t so harsh. The scoring system for keeping track of your PVP level are crowns. They have no use other than giving you an idea how decent of a job you are doing raiding and defending.  When you fail you can loose anything from 1-10 depending on what level dungeon you raid. I have more or less had zero the whole week. One or two good sessions are quickly followed by several defeats resulting in loss of all gains and sometimes everything I had. Frustrating to say the least.

Depending on how long they run the beta they may or may not address the myriad of slight balance tweaks. In the end though I found Mighty Quest for Epic Loot to be a pretty casual take on a familiar genre and being free it’s worth a peek when it goes live.