Demons, trolls, and orcs oh my! Magicka has got them all, and you know what else Magicka has? A whole lot and then some. Magicka is all about customizing your attacks and blasting the crap out of your enemies and sometimes even your friends, all in good fun of course. If you’re looking for a fun PC game to play with friends this may possibly be one of them that should be on the list.
Magicka is based on Norse mythology that takes place in the fantasy world of Midgard. You play a mage/warlock/wizard whatever you may want to call it, but nonetheless a member of the Order of Magick. The game begins as the capital city of Hávindr is under attack, and you being a faithful servant to the king, set out to do what you may to aid the King in protecting the great city. Throughout the 13 levels of your adventure, the game is narrated by the cheeky vamp… er “non-vampire” mentor Vlad (seems to not have come out of the casket yet).
Controls in the game a bit different to your normally played PC games. A three button mouse is required for the game, without it you might need to reconfigure your keyboard. Left click and hold to move, right click to cast your magic, and middle mouse click to cast on yourself. Q, W, E, R, A, S, D, and F keys are mapped out to be your element keys. Q for water, W to heal, E for shield, R for Ice, A for electricity, S for arcane magic, D for earth, and F for fire. The Shift key enables players to use their melee weapon to get up close and personal or to perform close range area of effect cast of magic, while the CTRL key is used to block. Lastly the Space bar is used to combine certain combinations of elements to create a greater spell.
I know it all sounds like a lot, and it kind of is but you’ll get used to the buttons rather quickly. The eight element keys can be used in combination to create powerful spells to use against the enemy. Up to five combinations of elements can be used at one time, the more combinations the stronger the spell (usually). Two things to remember when combining elements. First, is that each element has an opposite, fire and water, electricity and earth etc etc. Second thing is that combining two elements together, can create another element like frost and water creates ice, fire and water create steam. Considering only five elements are used, and a few extra other combo elements, there can be a large number of spells, powerful or not.
Gameplay is harsh, but I think the frustrating difficulty and the constant run and dodge makes the game fun. Think the vulnerability of the mage you play mixed in with the frailness, really sets the character up perfectly to see how weak or strong a character can be. I mean how many mage types do you know who can play as a tank? Not too many I’m assuming. Expect to die and die often, and besides from frantically healing and smashing your keyboard to find the best combination, Magicka really gives you rewards for searching levels for new weapons and magic recipes. Even with so much action going on, on the battlefield they still find time to add some comedy in the game. Shoot a beam based element and “cross” beams with another enemy or friend and you may end up blowing yourself up or combine beams and achieve the “Never cross the beams” or “IMMA FIRIN’ MAH LAZER!!!!”. Throughout Magicka’s story, the cut scenes between levels are comedic and fun to watch. What pulls you in paying attention more to the scenes is the fact that the narration isn’t in English. Rather than giving gamers the easy way out the developers seemed to have it subtitled so players can read the dialogue between characters.
When you complete the game there’s also another mode to play called Challenge’s. Which contains two different modes, Arena, which is where you’re placed in an arena with up to four friends to defeat wave after wave of baddies, and Survival, where you have a full level where you have to complete certain objectives.
Magicka seems to have a lot for a small package. For only $10, you get multiplayer, co-op scenario, a comedic and challenging story mode, and a totally different a fun game to play on your PC. You may not be able to “level” your character up but with the multitude of weapons and staffs, and custom spells to cast, it makes Magicka stand out among almost all types of games. If you have $10 to spend this is definitely one that should be on your radar.
[starreviewmulti id=2 tpl=20]
Overall = 8.6