Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade

Platform(s): PSP
Genre: Role-Playing
Publisher: Sony Online Entertainment
Developer: Sony Online Entertainment

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PSP Preview - 'Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade'

by Paul Reith on Feb. 15, 2005 @ 12:44 a.m. PST

With fast-paced, hack 'n slash action, randomly-generated environments, monsters and items, beautiful 3D graphics and wireless cooperative multiplayer gameplay, Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade offers a compelling, on-the-go gameplay experience never before seen on a handheld gaming device. Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade introduces four customizable playable races: an original storyline; cooperative multiplayer gameplay via the PSP handheld system's WiFi feature; easy simplified controls that offer depth of gameplay without complexity; and beautiful, vibrant environments that take full advantage of the PSP handheld system's technical capabilities.

Genre: Action RPG
Publisher: Sony Online Entertainment
Developer: Sony Online Entertainment
Release Date: March 2005

One of the hottest platforms yet to be released to North America is the PSP from Sony. A high-powered portable, many are awaiting its release, but to be perfectly honest, there have not been many exciting releases set for the platform in the North American market. In spite of all the drudgery, sorting through the many titles migrated to the platform has unveiled an original title from Sony Online Entertainment that sparked enough of our imagination to get a bit excited.

Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade may be the hottest RPG on the platform; it's not only an RPG with the requisite four main types of characters, but also a multiplayer RPG where wireless connectivity will enable players to join in the action, and from our brief look, it already works smoothly, nearly seamlessly. More on the multiplayer action in the weeks to come.

For now, what does Untold Legends have to offer the single player mode? It seems that SOE has chosen to create a game that should appeal to players 14 to 40, a hack ‘n’ slash RPG built exclusively for the platform, with an efficient and effective control scheme designed exclusively for this title.

To begin with, the controls are what truly define this title as the video game truly designed for the PSP. A prime exhibit of the superior control design is how restoring both health and power is activated using the left and right buttons on the top of the PSP, where your index fingers naturally rest. Restoring health and power becomes a natural reaction, making utilization of prime resources in Untold Legends as intuitive as a reflex.

Smartly, SOE also built items and artifacts that seem almost infinitely variable through using multiple factors to generate them relative to the above or underground environments, and these two main environment styles are created to establish over 100 missions and sub-missions to keep you busy. SOE chose to create a rather unique overworld map where the individual missions occupy points on a map that you have from the beginning of the game. Rather than a linear journey, you are challenged to take on quests at various preexisting points on the map. While this may seem too predictable to many players, this reduces the annoyance of an unforeseen overworld, and with over 100 challenges, where your next challenge will be on the overworld map is quite unpredictable.

The graphics are nice, but what truly defines Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade are the responsive controls. Hack ‘n’ slash action is quick and surprisingly responsive. Compared to many other titles, the characters respond instantly, where some other offerings on the PSP platform offer a frustratingly high level of delay in responsiveness.

Take a look at the screenshots… Untold Legends looks as good as any game we’ve seen on the PSP, and when we get a chance to get a real close look, we’ll be back with a full report. Thanks to the superb graphics, numerous missions, and tailor-made control scheme, Untold Legends looks to be ready to compete with RPGs on the PS2, Xbox, or GameCube. This title is one of the main reasons to get excited about the platform's launch date.


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