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Apokalyx


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Rating: 4.2/5 (55 votes)
| Comments (9) | Views (80)

BradApocalyxApokalyx is a turn-based RPG recently released by Xplored. It's set 600 years after a cataclysmic event that brought the world to its knees. No one is sure what exactly the event was, but nonetheless it has radically changed the world; it caused mutations, gave rise to slavery and ushered the way for history's favorite blood sport: gladiatorial combat.

In Apokalyx you'll create a character by first choosing one of the three races: Mutant, Stark One or Wildcat. The biggest difference between each race is the powers they have. Each race has 30 different powers that can be earned using skill points. After that you can select a pre-made build that best describes your playing style such as "tank" or "aggressive." If you want to get your hands dirty and distribute your starting stat points yourself there's also an option for that. After that you can customize your character's appearance, and then it's time to go to town to prepare for battle.

The town area is where you'll go between battles and it consists of three locations. The store is where you'll be buying and selling, naturally. The barracks is where you go to distribute the skill points you earn after every battle. Finally, in the tavern you can hire allies who will stay with you for one fight, or get some info on your opponents.

Last but certainly not least is the arena, where the bulk of the game is. Combat is turn based and you'll control all actions with your mouse. Click on an enemy to attack and choose whether you want to use on of your powers or perform a physical strike. If you're doing a physical strike you can attack multiple times, but your accuracy will decrease with each successive attack, which also goes for dual-wielding weapons. Click on yourself and you can choose to heal or use a power. If you're bringing allies into the fray with you they'll be AI controlled. After you mop the floor with your enemies, you'll get to loot one piece of equipment from the body or bodies of the fallen.

ApokalyxAnalysis: If you like RPGs for stat management and combat, then you and Apokalyx are going to get along very well. This game is all about combat and it gives you hours of it, which is a bit of a double-edge sword. On one hand, the combat is fun, fast and polished and it will appeal to players who find more traditional RPGs kind of slow. On the other, if you don't like such a combat focused game, or you get bored with all the battling, well, there's nothing else to do. However, even without sidequests or much in the way of story, if you like turnbased combat there's still a lot to like about Apokalyx... you just might want to play it in short sittings.

The combat system is simple and well done. If you manage your stats right none of the fights will be particularly difficult, but that works for the game because it keeps things rolling.There are a total of 60 battles in the game and if the difficulty made major spikes then the game would lose the important one-more-level quality that will keep you going forward. There are some other smart features that keep the game from getting tedious, such as the repeat button. If you're playing as a really strong bruiser-type character, then you'll find yourself endlessly selecting enemies, selecting how many times you want to attack them and then going through the process again on the next turn. The repeat button saves you from that by just repeating your last actions. This keeps battles nice and quick. Another handy feature is that the game auto-saves your progress after every level, so you'll never have to worry about getting killed and being set a long way back because you forgot to save. The ally AI is usually pretty good, but sometimes it would be nice to be able to direct their attacks.

Apokalyx looks pretty good, even if there's not a whole lot to look at. The characters are well modeled, though it'd be nice if there was more variety. The artwork style used in the intro videos is very striking and it's a shame we don't get more of it because not only does it look good, but it's really visually interesting. The voice acting during the intro scenes isn't bad, but in-game at the beginning of each round as the combatants are trading taunts it can get a little old. Thankfully they go by pretty quick and you can skip over them easily enough. Otherwise, the sound is pretty good, with hit sounds and audience reaction during combat as nice touches.

If you're a fan of games like Swords and Sandals, or you tried them but wished there was more to them, then Apokalyx is just the game for you. While it'd be nice if Xplored had included more than just combat, they've still made a fun game. The repetition and limited scope might turn off some players, but Apokalyx works just as well in small doses as it does for long sessions of play. If you want a turn-based combat heavy RPG then Apokalyx will keep you busy for a very long time.

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9 Comments

It's fun, and I have played it over at AG before, but it is pretty far from perfect. I have played as an agile Wildcat(Wind/animal/fire/water) and a custom-made Stark one(Pole user with a balanced build, using the 3 skill schools on the right), and I found that both made the game very easy.

I very rarely felt the need to use the allies, which meant the few times I did, I had more than enough money to hire the absolute best. I also found that by the time you reach the 3rd arena, half the time, after a few turns buffing, you can nearly one hit everyone. This was VERY true from my wild cat, since I used Brawl weapons. Using all the animal buffs plus Fire I and Wind V, I could kill an entire group of 3 in one go after buffed. Thanks to Animal III though, it was rare that I found an opponent that ever even got the chance to take a swing at me, and Wind I was enough to make that a moot point anyway.

Over all, I would say its a very nice game, and I signed up for their newsletter and plan to keep an eye on the multi-player version, but I think the system needs some tweaks, otherwise it will just be a bunch of one hits by the mid-higher levels.

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Anonymous October 26, 2010 2:31 PM

Its good fun, but there are a lot of gameplay balance issues really. The major one people will discover is that the 5th tier elemental skills are just too strong. Once you get there, you never really need to add any other stats at all. The combo I used was the 5th and 4th tier beast buffs which doubled my agility skills (which where are maxed) and made my str 125, enough to kill literally anything in one or two hits and almost never miss or get hit. The 3rd tier healing spell is also very very strong, though as it only heals I suppose its not completely broken.

Another is that the difficulty of raising skills when making the char and after that is too great. It REALLY promotes min/maxing when creating the char, though by the end of the game you have enough skills to max out pretty much most of what you want. Also, the "species" you choose should impact your actions after you created your character.

Its still fun and the idea of looting 1 item from your opponents is neat (though gold became worthless very fast), just that it is too easy to unbalance.

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I found a Stark Polearm user seemed to work extremely well. Though you could probably do just as well or better as a sword and shield user.

Unlike most where you have to wait until the awesome level 4 and 5 stuff, you get some really nice stuff very quickly. There are tons of passives that boost your stats and get better as you go, so you wind up adding your Discipline to most of your stats.

The level 2 discipline called Intimidate is a beast! It takes 3 of your stats and a 1d20 and subtracts 3 of their stats and that is the penalty that ALL ENEMIES suffer for a number of rounds equal to your discipline (2 to 5).
Its crazy good! With high initiative you Yell at them and they eat ever-increasing penalties that converts a "70% to hit you" into a 5% to hit you.
Your 95% hit at +3 damage turns into a 95% at +29 damage!

The polearm user hits hard enough to penetrate enemy armor well and you don't have to worry about any of your right-hand stats except Polearm weapon skill, a bit of armor occasionally and maxing Passion.

Then you boost Strength and Willpower on the left side for an uber character that by Discipline 3 you totally own 1v3s easy.

If you make it to Discipline 5 it gets crazy.. you add your Focus (max of 20) to EVERYTHING YOU DO!

That plus Yell equals ridiculous +65 damage attacks on top of your high base damage.

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Agreed that there are balance issues. Another level 2 Stark skill, Power Attack, replaces the bodybuild component in the damage formula (max 20), with Discipline*Passion (max 100, or 120 with a potion). Using this skill I was one- or two-shotting every opponent in the endgame including the final boss.

Because of the high absorption values of endgame armors, players are steered towards twohanders rather than 1h+shield or dual weapons... but you don't need a shield anyway since you're untouchable even without it.

There's a nasty bug which causes a battle to become unplayable when opponents get stuck in the middle of the arena rather than returning to their side. It's also frustrating that there's no way to exit a match in progress other than reloading your last save; I desperately wanted a "call it a draw" option when I ended up in a "cleric's duel" situation where neither of us could outdamage the other's healing ability.

Overall, B- from me. Nice start but needs work.

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There is a huge bug here. I am totally unable to use my elemental powers, since when I do the game freezes, seemingly irreparably. I just have to reload the page. Please fix!

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New (latest) version is now up.

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DarthMeow504 Author Profile Page November 1, 2010 3:59 AM

I noticed there doesn't seem to be a way to change the gender of your character. What is the good of being able to customize appearance if you can't change something so basic? Did the game developers just assume that everyone playing their game would be male, or that no males would want to play female characters? That's a fail for me.

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@ A Person

I had the same problem. Was using Safari. After switching to Chrome it worked fine.

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I noticed that Wildcat casters have an elemental 2 ability that lowers a target's vigor stats, and lasts for elemental (2 - 5) rounds.

This means that the ability stacks with itself, and it can be used to 2-shot anything.

When you hit elemental 5, you get an auto-kill spell, which works on pretty much everything. Even the last boss will die to it if you debuff his vigor stats (with earlier mentioned ability) once.

Then there's the Stark One. dual-wield swords, get focus up for the passive skill that adds focus to everything you do, and you just kind of auto-win against everything.

Lastly is the Mutant. This guy is extremely underpowered compared to the other two. His casting abilities suck, and he doesn't get the passives of the stark one, so he's left to buff himself. Problem is, he doesn't get good buffs until Mutation 4 and 5. So usually he needs backup to just survive some fights, and you spend a looot of time buffing yourself instead of attacking, which makes the fights last very long.

All in all, I did enjoy the game a lot, just wish Mutants weren't so underpowered in comparison.

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