Sunday, November 9, 2014

Game Review: Demon King Box

Lane Defense; 3DS eShop; Circle; 2014
Hi there, Ho there. There isn't much to say about this week, other than I'm finally done with the Mighty Smashers Tournament. I won't say the results of the tournament considering the organizer Pontata wants to keep that a surprise for when the newly edited video of the final match comes out. But there isn't much else to talk about so, here is a game that is like Disgaea, except it's not.


The Demon Lord once ruled over all of the Demon World, and with his massive army sought to take over the human world. However, his army was defeated and scattered, and the Demon Lord himself was sealed away into a box. Years later the seal on his prison weakened, and now the Demon Lord has return, manifesting as a voice emanating from his dark weapon; The Ravager Blade. Unfortunately for him, the Ravager Blade is in the hands of a lowly Demon Pig, and his forces have all gone their separate ways. Now before the Demon Lord can once again threaten the human world, he must first unite all of his forces under his run once again.

The story is simple and pretty much what you can expect if you have ever played a NIS game (Particularly Disgaea or Makai Kingdom). However, while those games have an excellent story with well written and quirky characters, Demon King Box suffers from the WORSE English translation I've seen since Breath of Fire II. It's not just that it's bad, it's confusing, unclear, and littered with moonspeak, grammatical errors, missing spaces and captializations, and fill of "What the hell are they talking about" moments. It's clear that this is a budget game, but it seems like the amount of money spent on localization didn't even break the double digit mark. It's not "All Your Base Are Belong To Us" Levels, but it's damn near close.

Meet Reason #1 why this game is rated M.
Demon King Box is best described as a Lane Defense game. The game is split up into Stages where each stage you either have a number of enemy units to defeat, or an enemy Hero to slay. You do this by sending out troops down one of 5 lanes, 3 lanes for small units and 2 lanes for large unit. Each troop will march down their respective lane until they run across an enemy on their lane in which case they being fighting each other until one of them is dead; however, they will ONLY attack enemies on their own lane, with the exception of large units who can attack and be attacked not only by units on their own lane, but also units from the two adjacent small unit lanes. To send an unit, you must have the required Demon Spirit, a resource that slowly builds during battle, but also builds quickly when an enemy unit is defeated, to summon them and once summon you must wait for the cool down period before sending another of the same unit. In addition to units, you also have a Hero that you must defend from attacks as losing your Hero is you defeat condition. However, different heroes have different skills which can be activated during combat to give your units, or certain types of units, buffs and new abilities, such as more attack, more HP, or double the units deployed. Between battles, there is little to do outside of using food acquired during the fight to upgrade your heroes and units, or acquire new units once you've fulfilled the requirements, and switch up your hero and troop set-up. However, there is still quite a lot of variety among the heroes and troops, so even though you are essentially doing the same thing over and over again, there is still some freshness when you are trying out a brand new unit to see how well it can function in your army.

And Reason #2 as to why this game is rated M.
Unfortunately, much like Circle's previous game "Witch & Hero," Demon King Box has a very unpredictable difficulty curve. After playing for a few stages you will suddenly be thrown into a stage that will just unrelentingly kick your ass. And, again much like Witch & Hero, your only course of action is not to change up your strategy, but rather just grid until your units are strong enough to take on this new foe. It ruins the flow of the game when you have to go back to earlier stages to gain more food to upgrade your units, and it reeks of a lazy attempt to pad out an already short game. Especially since the game just suddenly ends out of no where without so much as a conclusion to the story. True, there are a slew of post game stages to take on, but it just feels weird that after all that talk about returning to the human world to get his revenge, we never actually head to the human world. Maybe a sequel is in the works? I don't know, but it does give a very empty feeling once you've completed the game.

Much like Zombie Panic in Wonderland, last week. The main crux of whether or not to get Demon King Box is down to it's price verses it's content. Demon King Box is rather cheap at only $4, and though there is a lot of grinding to do in the game, it will last you for a few hours. A few more if you are interested in the post game stages. However, if this game isn't interesting to you either from a gameplay standpoint or an ascetic standpoint then there isn't much to warrant a purchase. However, if you are interested, it's only $4, and who knows, you might find it even cheaper when it goes on sale. Demon King Box is just barely recommended.

Until Next time.

-Crescent, Why do girls find slimes so cute?

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