Saturday, 20 October 2012

VIDEO GAME REVIEW: Of Orcs and Men - Koch Media

Release Date: 25/10/12


In a brutal world at war, where the Empire of Men seeks to expand its domination and impose its beliefs, Goblins are systematically persecuted and slaughtered, while Orcs, if not killed in battle, are destined to be enslaved.

Play as Arkaïl, an elite Orc soldier of the legendary legion of Bloodjaws, a league of warriors devoted to victory in the war against Humankind. As a veteran group of warriors who have seen the most brutal of battles, the Bloodjaws are appointed to complete a mission that could change the course of the war: kill the one man responsible for all of the bloodshed, the one who has, for years, exhorted the human masses to loath and fight the green-skinned people... the Emperor himself.

Goblin, Styx will soon join you to aid you in your mission. He is everything Arkaïl is not. While Arkaïl focuses on power, due to his incredible strength, Styx benefits from darker powers and stealth abilities, making him the perfect assassin. From the filthy alleys at the foot of the Great Wall to the depths of the Empire of Men, your heroes will face the greatest dangers throughout their epic quest.


Originally this title came onto my radar a while ago and since I’m a fan of the Greenskins I’ve always wanted a game told from their point of view in much the same way that it’s come over in books from authors like Stan Nicholls and Mary Gentle.

Which is exactly what this game brings to the table. Its set in an imaginative world with the Orc’s fighting a losing battle, hounded from their own lands by the Empire of Men who out of desperation launch one final assault financed by the Emperor’s enemies. Here you play as the Orc Warrior Arkhail and his sneaky goblin assassin guide Styx which brings all the elements of a well told story together with some twists blended together with solid combat sequences where you fight it out using a similar technique as was employed within Dragon Age and Koch’s own Game of Thrones where with each level you can pick new skills as well as being able to bump your stats.

At first you will find it a little disorientating as you figure out your fighting style choices alongside working out which armour and weaponry suits you better. But for me the key elements that really sell this is the character interaction alongside the storyline. It was great fun to play especially watching them develop however one of my major problems was the fact that Arkhail would go berserk and leave you unable to do anything until his rage burnt out. It did effect your choices and even the option to use burn some of the rage for hit points really didn’t effect it much as one swipe later it bumped up even higher than it was before you tried to use it and whilst all in, it was a whole load of fun my other major gripe was that I felt that the game was a little too short with me completing it in less than a weekend.

Don’t get me wrong, I had tons of fun handing out Greenskin justice but when you’re paying top whack for a game you expect it to last for quite some time.

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