Pagan Online release date was on the 27th of August and one week into its release, people have dished out some serious opinions on this game. This title largely seems to be drawing attention because it looks good and gives off the feeling of being an improvement on the Hack-and-slash RPG action genre. And, it really is that. However, the game does have its drawbacks which the developers themselves have acknowledged and are working on it tirelessly, so this game does deserve a serious look.
Development and reception
This title comes solely for PC and it’s signed by Mad Head Games as its developer. This is the same studio that has some other interesting games out on Steam, like Adam Wolfe, Rite of Passage series, Nevertales series, Dark Realm series…and, yeah…lots of other solid titles. The publishing was handled by Wargaming.net, and given the fact that this game got pretty wide pretty fast, their job was solid too. On Steam, Pagan Online has mixed reviews so far, which is the fate of all action RPG H&S games it seems, even Diablo was not immune. It costs under thirty bucks but it is surprisingly a frequent purchase, given its price.
The publisher perhaps gave the best description for the setting of this game’s storyline, and it goes like this:
“Revisit your grandma’s fairy tales with a two-handed battle axe. Quest for glory and the treasures of the absent Gods in this brutal fast-paced hack and slash game, which you can play solo or co-operatively.”
And, that’s it really. You are a part of a fantasy world filled with Slavic mythology and all kinds of imaginable creatures and foes and your mission is to win. Now, the mission goal depends on whether or not you need to kill a specific target or defeat all enemies in a certain area. But, the core experience of this title is its action-packed combat, which is what the hack and slash badge is earned for. So, ‘little less conversation a little more action, please’.
Pagan Online action RPG uses the same pattern all other games from the genre use. You kill stuff, loot, and then you go back to your sanctuary to spend rewards and upgrade your character. This is not what sets it aside. What does set this game apart from the rest is its control system and its colorful characters, which is something the entire community agrees right now. The other thing that makes this game stand out is its WASD control system, as opposed to the standard Mouse focus most action RPGs use. This feature did receive quite a positive reaction from the crowds.
Pagan Online’s characters are not typical classes you would expect to get in a game of this genre. Here, the characters come with their own skill sets already paved for them. However, character progression is naturally a part of the game, otherwise, it wouldn’t be an RPG. As a means to evolve your characters, you can expand and augment their abilities over time, slightly changing the way they work or cooperate with other ones.
Lastly, this game features unlockable characters. There are eight characters in total and only three available at the start. You unlock the rest by collecting hero shards for the specific hero. The diversity of the characters really shifts the entire flavor of this game and playing a different character can make it as if you are indeed playing a different game. However, this brings us to the first problem most of the online community encountered, which is – character unlocking. Since ALL characters offer a unique blend to the game, you can end up having to farm and play quite a bit with a character you perhaps dislike to get to some that potentially matches your own play style.
But, this is in our opinion made up for the awesome ways in which these characters are designed. All of them possess innovative mechanics and abilities, rarely seen in this genre, and playing each can be a lot of fun. The other drawback pointed out by people online is that the augmentation and character progression is somewhat narrow, only limited to expanding or extending the range for a specific ability or similar stuff. However, this is what Mad Head Games, the developer, did acknowledge and they are working on it right now.
Appearance and Graphics
Pagan Online looks incredibly well with its own art style inspired by Slavic mythology and art. The game is perfectly rendered and polished up to display the action in the best possible way. Modeling also provides a sort of a unique flavor, which again improves the entire genre like so many other stuff done to this game.
Pagan Online offers endless replayability, endless content, 8 incredibly interesting characters with their own specific gameplay flavor, and it looks great. Some of the little problems it has been immediately recognized by the developer, which is awfully nice, and are being addressed promptly, which is more than we can ask for. All in all, this game is an improvement on the action RPG hack and slash genre, no two words about it.