Lionheart: Legacy of the Crusader Review - Box

Lionheart: Legacy of the Crusader Review
Ages: Mature

At first glance, this game looks like a boys game. And it is, in theory. This game was made for boys, but that's no reason why girls can't enjoy it. I know I most certainly did. The cover shows a man dressed like a Crusades fighting a twisted shape of a man with small horns protruding from his head. Anyway, let's cut away from that first glance and delve deeper into the game. You get to choose from eight pre-made characters, two from each race, and each with their good and bad sides. For instance, some are better at fighting and horrible at diplomacy, while others are the opposite. After you choose your character, it cuts to a scene, and as the dialogue mounts, you get drawn in, no matter how hard you try not to be. While the first scene is the same for all of the characters, the plot is slightly different every time. In all of them, it becomes obvious that you are the Scion of Lionheart; the descendent of Richard the Lionheart, destined for greatness in the world. This is a role-playing game, so there is lots of action and fighting, with some magic strewn in. Since it goes on and on, it's hard to just stop playing. You'll find yourself coming back telling yourself that "I have to get through the dungeon!" The sounds are small, with only the most important characters actually getting to speak. In order to play this game, you should have a basic knowledge of letters and words. (You have to be able to read). After the opening sequence, you enter Barcelona... at least; the name of the city is Barcelona. Character such as Cortez, Shakespeare, and Leonardo do Vinci appear at the same time, even though they are from entirely different time periods. Such is the effect of the Disjunction, the tearing of the fabric of reality after the Crusades. The music fits the mood, sometimes foreboding, sometimes period, and all of it has a hint of fantasy in the score. The graphics are good, but you only have one viewpoint, from above your player. This becomes annoying if you are trying to go through an alleyway without being able to see what is on the opposite side of the street. The monsters are well crafted, and the humans are given a wide range of movement. The game play is extremely interesting, drawing in the player with hundreds of side quests, dungeons, and a plot that will have you wondering what would happen next. The game goes on a very long time, but with luck, you'll make it out of Barcelona after two or three heavy game sessions. The game has replay value. If it did not, you would never finish it. And even if you did complete the entire game, you would find yourself going back with another character, tweaking events here, trying to figure out what would have been a better course of action there, and so on. I agree with the "M" rating on this game. Not only does it have fighting, it also had some mature themes that would not be appreciated by the parents of younger children. The fighting has no blood, but there is so much of it that it overshadows the plot. In a score of 1 to 10, 1 being the lowest, this game would rate about an 8. The game was interesting and fun, but it would not appeal to most girls because it is marketed towards boys. There are many games out there that girls would find interesting, but they do not care to try simply because they are classified as "boy's games". Lionheart: Legacy of the Crusader is one of those games.

Reviewed by: Vivian B. Age 14 - 10/03

  • Lionheart: Legacy of the Crusader Review
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