Lords of Xulima Early Access Review
by Marcus Estrada
When looking through Early Access you’ll find tons of titles to choose from. Heck, there are even some people devoted to the monumental task of creating RPGs! Case in point, Lords of Xulima models itself after classic RPGs with challenging, yet engaging turn-based gameplay and exploration. Despite still being incomplete, the game actually does manage to recapture the feeling of playing older RPGs but with some fancier graphics.
So far, the main focus definitely appears to be gameplay over story. Although a lengthy introduction trailer played at the start I admittedly forgot most of what it said once it was time to finally play. The basics have to do with the protagonist being called upon by a god to reach the island of Xulima. It seems that Xulima is the home of the Nine Gods, who are needed in order to save the rest of the world from its current torment. The thing is, you hardly need the storyline to get into Lords of Xulima’s action. Select a difficulty, choose your party (or leave it at default, and immediately you’re dropped into a fantasy world that begs to be explored.
Players are treated to a nice top-down perspective and freedom to adventure as they see fit. There are towns, caves, forests, and basically all the areas one would expect from an RPG. However, there some distinctive features as well. For one, you can’t simply run around slaying monsters without a care as to your party’s health. They must be kept fed, which can be done by buying or finding food along the way. With food in your satchel the screen shows just how many days the food will last between your teammates. It’s kind of odd, but an interesting concept nonetheless. In another unique twist, party members slowly heal with time and will be fully healed after 24 hours. Time is ever-present in the game and ticks on even if you don’t command your party to sleep.
Beyond neat features like a day/night cycle, there’s also the strategic battle system itself. While adventuring you will find enemies sitting around on the field. It’s only when you get near that fights are triggered. Once in a fight your team will be positioned in front and back rows. They also sit in the left, middle, or right of the battlefield. Such placement directly affects how battles play out. For example, a right-bound hero can’t hit an enemy on the left side of the field. Some of the battle interface is confusing at first, but after a few battles it eventually begins to make sense. One more thing to be said about battles is that they’re hard. No matter which difficulty you select it won’t be long before your team is all bloodied up and forced to make copious use of nearby inns.
Lords of Xulima should really appeal to players who love a good, difficult RPG. There are definitely some aspects that could see furthered tweaking, such as adding more to the day/night cycle, but as is there’s already a fully featured game waiting for players. The development team is also constantly turning to players for feedback, which is just what you’d hope to find from an Early Access title. If you jump into Lords of Xulima now you can expect a massive game, regular updates, and a developer who is more than happy to read feedback. If you’re a big Early Access gamer then you know these traits are rarer than they should be!
[author image=”http://cliqist.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/marcus.jpg” ] Marcus is a fellow with a love for video games, horror, and Japanese food. When he’s not writing about games for a multitude of sites, he’s usually still playing one. One day when he became fed up with the way sites would ignore niche titles he decided to start his own site by the name of Pixel Pacas. Writing about video games is something he hopes to continue doing for many years to come. Some of Marcus’s favorite games include Silent Hill 2, Killer7, and The Sims. [/author]