PSP Review: Untold Legends

This post is more than 2 years old.

Summary for those who don’t want to bother through my long-winded and rambling review: Good Diablo 2 clone that suffers from a major, game-ending flaw.

I’ve had the PSP now for a few months and the more I use it – the more I enjoy it. I figured it was time for me to write up a few reviews of the games I’ve played so folks can decide if the PSP if for them.

One game I’m enjoying (or was enjoying) rather much is Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade. UL is an hack and slash based RPG – which really means it is a button masher with RPG elements added to the top. I don’t mind that. In fact, UL is pretty much a Diablo 2 clone, and Diablo 2 was a pretty darn good game. UL has many of the same elements – a small set of core classes – a skills tree – and an arcade style interface that requires quick thinking during battles. UL’s classes include: Knight, Berserker, Alchemist, and Druid. I’ve mainly played as the Knight so most of my experience is with the physical side of the game, not the magical. Like Diablo, the levels are randomly generated (although that isn’t so great, see below), along with the items. This is what makes the game so interesting. Every quest into a dungeon can result in some new (and very cool) looking weapon to add to your arsenal.

Speaking of quests – one of the coolest things about this game is how short the quests are. Now – I know what you are saying – why bother playing it if the quests are so simple? UL is the perfect game for picking up – playing for 20 or so minutes – and putting it back down again. The quests do get a bit repetitive (almost every single quest seems to be, Go out and kill Foo, and bring back his Goo), but I’m willing to sacrifice depth for a quick romp through a dungeon.

Sound: The music and sound effects of the game are average. Note though when I say ‘average’ I mean average for the PSP, which is far and above what you have may have heard from a Gameboy. With earphones plugged in, every PSP game I have seen is a treat for the ears. That being said, the music for UL is your typical, generic fantasy type music. In fact, it reminds me just how amazing the score was for Diablo 2. (Interesting side note: A few weeks ago I was listening to the classical music station on Sky.FM. I noticed a familiar ring to one of the songs they were playing. Turns out – it was from the Diablo 2 soundtrack. How cool is that?)

Graphics: The graphics – again – are average (for the PSP). Some of the effects though are rather nice. One monster you fight is literally too big to fix on the screen. The “feel” of that worked rather well and had me running away at first.

So – now for the bad news. I was happily playing the game when I ran into something weird. I was in a particular zone and had to go to another zone. But the exit was missing. I scratched my head. Looked again – but didn’t see the exit. I checked online and found a few other people had suffered the same problem. It seems as though the random map generator, at times, will generate a map and forget an exit. That’s a bit like God accidentally forgetting to turn gravity on when creating the universe. Luckily (or so I thought), various people had various ways to supposedly force the game to refresh the map. Unluckily for me – none of these tricks worked. So – I’m stuck – and can’t recommend what would have been a great game. If I ever do get past this bug, I’ll let folks know.

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About Raymond Camden

Raymond is a senior developer evangelist for Adobe. He focuses on document services, JavaScript, and enterprise cat demos. If you like this article, please consider visiting my Amazon Wishlist or donating via PayPal to show your support. You can even buy me a coffee!

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Archived Comments

Comment 1 by Dan G. Switzer, II posted on 7/22/2005 at 3:34 AM

That sucks! I've been playing the game as well. It's a good little time killer and w/the PSP's suspend feature, you can turn the thing on mash some buttons, then suspend and go back to your day.

Do you purchase have a saved game before the map was generated? Maybe you can go back to a previous saved game before the map was generated. I usually use one main saved game and then an alternate that I use whenever I level up. I may add a second save right before I enter a new map.

What map is it? Perhaps there's another way to get to the level on the other side.

I like the game, but here are my biggest complaints:

* The random item generator sucks. I found a bunch of +12 strength rings at the beginning of the game and haven't seen a ring near that powerful since. Also, often I have items in my inventory that I've had for a while, yet I'll come across some weapon that's just about as powerful, but I need to be like 3 or 4 levels higher in order to use it. I'm like level 28 now and really haven't seen any magical bonuses that are really that much better than any other items for at least 20 levels now. Granted the base damage/armour rating is a *little* better, but not enough to warrant the level restrictions.

* I wish when you teleported back to a map that the orientation would be the way it was when you teleported out. Or at least it should go to the map north (whatever direction that is.) I often get disorientated when teleporting back to a map--especially a new one.

Comment 2 by Mark Ireland posted on 7/22/2005 at 4:25 AM

Have you been playing Guild Wars?

Comment 3 by Raymond Camden posted on 7/22/2005 at 4:35 PM

Dan - You are right - I should have mentioned the suspend feature, which is one more thing that puts the PSP over the GB. I agree that the random items are rarely any good - but I still enjoy looking at them. I'm a freak I guess. :)

Mark: Nope, I'm not playing _any_ PC games now. I'm mainly playing Halo 2 (xbox) and Need for Speed (PSP).

Comment 4 by Dan G. Switzer, II posted on 7/28/2005 at 6:40 AM

Raymond,

I blogged some instructions on getting your PSP upgraded to the v2.0 firmware that was just released:
http://blog.pengoworks.com/...

Big changes!

- Dan