There is little to discuss, despite his 10 and over years of age, the world of League of Legends he is more alive than ever and ready to conquer more and more land and souls, oops, gamers under his wing. Now it’s the turn of Ruined King: A League of Legends Story, the new video game created by Riot Forge, the publishing label of Riot Games focused on the expansion of the videogame world of LoL. This chapter immerses us, or rather, submerges us in the region of Bilgewater and of Shadow Islands from Runeterra, presenting us a single player strategic video game with a lot to tell. Let’s find out more in this recensione di Ruined King: A League of Legends Story.
Our Ruined King: A League of Legends Story review
As anticipated, Ruined King transports us to Bilgewater, the pirate region of Runeterra ruled by sea wolves, scams and mythical sea creatures. The beginning of the story actually takes us a thousand years ago when the nearby Shadow Isles still bore the name of the Blessed Isles before being hit by a catastrophic Ruin. Since then, the shadows have periodically come out of their bleak realm to invade other lands, including nearby Bilgewater. In the present the situation is already difficult without the presence of shadows. The captain Sarah Fortune it has in fact recently ousted the tyrannical Gangplank killing him and avenging his mother’s death but the situation is more than tumultuous. Added to this is the arrival of a new one harvest, a terrifying attack from the Shadow Isles as dark rumors begin to spread among the people: Gangplank is returning!
In this far from rosy scenario our adventure begins during which we will take control of some of the most well-known characters of League of Legends including, Illaoi, Braum, Yasuo and many others. We will control a party consisting of no more than three characters at a time with which to explore the lands of Bilgewater and the Shadow Isles, discover more about the mystery that surrounds the harvest and move on with the stories of the protagonists.
The strategy in Runeterra
The Gameplay of Ruined King can be divided into two modes: exploration e combat. Exploration is characterized by a isometric camera from above which will give us a broad insight into our character and where we are going. During this phase we will be able to explore the surroundings, talk to the locals and look for objects and coins along the way. The maps they are generally quite guided typical of the most classic RPGs and greatly limit free exploration. But they are very large and we will have a lot to discover. In addition to the main mission, in fact, we will find many people around who need our help, objects and of course, enemies.
I enemies are visible on the map and will approach us as soon as they see us and start the mode combat. Here the view switches to a horizontal screen where we will have our parties on the right and the enemies on the left. The fights take place in turns and a clear “timeline” at the bottom shows us the order of action of the characters. Our heroes will have a quick attack, which can be launched on the spot, and a more demanding attack that, in addition to consuming mana, needs a load before being launched.
These latest attacks also feature the most interesting feature of this game, the lane division. The timeline we talked about, in fact, is divided into three lanes: Lane of Speed, Balance and Power. It is a division as simple as it is effective which, as the name suggests, will allow us to select the speed and power of the attack. If we cast a skill on the speed lane we will be faster but less powerful, while an attack on the power lane will take longer but in favor of more damage (or heals).
To these features are also added the more classic and inevitable that we have seen in other RPGs such as buffs and debuffs, active effects, poisoning, stun and so on. We will also have a number of consumable items available to succeed in battle and upgrade our heroes.
A matter of Level Up
Each hero has certain features which mainly vary depending on its preset role. Braum, for example, is a fantastic tank capable of absorbing the blows of enemies while Yasuo has a fast and powerful attack but low HP. Each feature (HP, MP, Strength, Physical Defense, Magic Defense and so on) is automatically upgraded every time the character levels up thanks to the experience gained in combat. What we can choose, however, are the skills. In fact, every hero has some active and passive skills which are unlocked as we level up. We will be able to manage the upgrades of each skill represented by a micro skill-tree. Every strengthening will give special and new characteristics to the skills and can be continuously exchanged to adapt to each battle.
To these are added the Rune, further enhancements affecting the characters and which will be available from a certain level onwards. Also in this case we will have two mini skill-trees that vary depending on the character to give him the more adequate features that fit our gameplay. Illaoi, for example, can become a very powerful priestess supported by equally powerful tentacles, or she can be developed to use her divine powers to heal and support the party. The choice is up to us alone and even then, the runes can be applied and exchanged at any time. This versatility is not surprising because, in short, Ruined King presents us with some really tough battles already at the normal level. We will therefore have to adapt runes and upgrades depending on the boss we will face if we want to be able to beat him. As if that weren’t enough, there are two additional difficulty levels for an unparalleled challenge!
A more than unique style
From a technical standpoint, Ruined King is nothing short of a feast for the eyes. The graphic style follows that of Battle Chasers: Nightwar, previous work by Airship Syndicate, which contributed to the making of this title. It shows up with one cartoon style but with dark and adult tones, in line with the themes of the game. The exploration and combat modes feature two very different styles going nonchalantly from 3D to 2.5D. In both cases, the amount of detail is exceptional and manages to give body and soul to the characters and the game maps.
The whole game is also sandwiched by cinematic made with the same technique and dialogue sequences between the characters who, although characterized by static models, still manage to involve us. Particularly appropriate are the animations of the fights which, between special and ultimate moves, bring a considerable dose of action despite the “calmness” of turn-based combat.
The use of original voice actors (also Italian) of League of Legends realized, once again in a masterly way. It will be like returning in-game in the company of old friends.
Ruined King: A League of Legends Story review in brief
Ultimately Ruined King presents itself as an excellent strategy RPG that can be enjoyed both by longtime League players and by strategy enthusiasts who have never set foot in Runeterra. All the technical, gameplay and narrative elements are at the top and are ready to let us discover even more about the mysteries that surround this region of the world and its characters.
A worthy extension of the fascinating world of League of Legends.