Beast Quest is a fantasy RPG by Miniclip that promises to be an “epic action-adventure.” An evil wizard has put a spell on all of the creatures in the land. With the help of a good wizard and a companion, you set out to fight the beasts and save the day. Unfortunately, the wilderness is as full of requests to spend real money as it is with wolves to tediously slaughter.
During combat, you fight with a sword by tapping your enemy before it gears up for an attack. You can either try to work in lots of small strikes, or tap and hold for a power strike. You are also given a shield for defense, and are rewarded for performing a “perfect block.” But after a certain number of hits, the shield will break, forcing you to rely on an awkward side-stepping mechanic to avoid blows. But with just seconds to decide whether to dodge left or right, you often end up taking the brunt of the attack, so the game clearly prioritizes maintaining and using your shield. You can fix the shield with your painstakingly accumulated in-game money, or, failing that, real currency. It also costs money to spend the night in your own tent and recover health.
If you run out of health, you don’t “die” but rather “retreat,” meaning you don’t start over with the health potions or money you had before the fight. This means those resources are wasted, and, again, you must spend money to heal yourself. Your companions, an archer and a wizard, are supposed to be fellow capable warriors, but they’re nowhere to be found during a fight, even after you “retreat” and come back to camp barely alive. And, in a move that is practically RPG sacrilege, you don’t get any more loot from a boss battle than you would from any other fight. I kept waiting for the “hordes of dangerous enemies” I was promised, but instead spent time grinding away killing wolves before I was strong enough to fight the boss.
To its credit, the game itself was fun to play when the plot was actually moving. The environment was nicely rendered, and the music was pretty epic. Besides the annoying shield maintenance, combat is engaging, with the ability to perform combos and quick-time attacks on multiple enemies. My favorite feature is that earning in-game achievements rewards the player with coins, which helps considerably to break up some of the grinding. One trophy, for example, rewards the player for scaring rabbits.
But the fun doesn’t outweigh the monotony. The real objective of the game seems to be to earn money, and the generic plot falls by the wayside. It costs money to heal yourself, to repair your shield, to improve your stats, even to sleep. Not to mention there is an option to earn free gems by watching previews for other games. One can’t help but feel slightly used. I don’t embark on a fantasy adventure to watch commercials. I can do that in the real world, and it sucks there too.
A few options for in-game purchases would be fine, but it feels like this game was engineered to make me want to skip through it rather than play. Do yourself a favor and just skip it entirely.
Is it Hardcore?
The game itself is kind of fun, but every single thing costs money.