Sacred Citadel &
Sacred Citadel Jungle Hunt
(Available on PC, Reviewed on XBOX 360 via XBLA)
Sacred Citadel and its add-on
Jungle Hunt is a classic old school side scrolling beat 'em up that
requires you to move from left to right and smash the absolute living
daylights out of your enemy opponents. The game is reminiscent of those
classic arcade games (provided you're old enough to remember) like
Double Dragon and Golden Axe but it's developers have
slightly modernised it.
Before starting the game, players (up to
three) must choose their character and each has a unique fighting style.
The characters in question include a Warrior, Mage, Ranger and Shaman
which are the classic Sword & Sorcery archetypes. My favourite character
in Sacred Citadel was the Ranger who with their trusty bow
allowed me to shoot enemies on the other side of the screen, unlike the
Warrior who needed to engage in melee attacks.
The games do have a story that requires the player to defeat one of two
powerful enemies and of course the standard good versus evil plotline...
yada yada yada and basically it's time to kick some evil butt. In the
first game, the player and friends must challenge Lord Zane and his
hideous army of Grimmocs which threatens to enslave the world of Ancaria.
The add-on for this game is Jungle Hunt that after defeating
Zane, the players must hunt down "Big Mama", one of the most powerful
Grimmocs who has stolen an ancient artefacts and has gone rampant in the
Fortunately these text cutscenes can be
skipped which allows you to get back straight to the action. Once you're
in the game, you will also soon realise that this game is not your
traditional button smasher. The game supports both a primary and
secondary attack with the ability of combinations that definitely adds
to the strategy of your gameplay.
As you progress through the various levels of Sacred Citadel and
Jungle Hunt, you will encounter new environments, monsters and
situations that still require you to hack 'n slash your way to victory.
Add in bonuses and the ability to collect coins, potions plus weapons
and Sacred Citadel unfortunately does become a tad repetitive,
especially in single-player. Where the game shines is through its
multiplayer component which really takes you back down memory lane to
those classic arcade machines of yesteryear.
Players can also "level" up as the game
keeps score of your experience points which is displayed on the HUD. To
compliment the experience bar, the game tallies your health and has
another metre for your special attack which can only be unleashed once
this bar is full. Apart from attacking, you have a block ability and
even the option of performing rolls which is needed for certain battles.
As you progress, the game does allow you to unlock new abilities for
your characters that helps keep things interesting and are sorely needed
for boss battles. All in all, it's a modernised beat em' up that works
but definitely requires additional players for the fun element.
Graphically, Sacred Citadel is a good looking title on the XBox 360 with
its cell shaded graphics and colourful environments. Characters move
with that old school grace but the only complaint I had with the
graphics was the scrolling mechanism. The scrolling of the game is
controlled by the game itself which does become a little jarring because
no matter how far you move to the right, the game will not scroll until
you have dispatched all your enemies. Once again another homage to
gaming of the previous century. Sound and music work well with both the
gameplay and graphics.
Sacred Citadel and Sacred Citadel
Jungle Hunt is recommended to those lovers of old school arcade fun.
Graphically it's a good looking title and the gameplay is sturdy,
although does become repetitive. To fully immerse yourself into this
experience, you really need to play with others. The first game contains
five solid levels with the add-on boasting an additional three.
Check it out if you want some mindless fun!