Hero’s Song is a thing you can pay money for and gain access to. Thank you, good night. Alright, I’ll keep going.
I think you could look into my history on Twitter and here on this website and easily lose count as to how many times I have said that I refuse to rate games based on what they could be rather than what they are. In consideration of the fact that Hero’s Song technically isn’t even available for purchase outside of those who backed early on Indiegogo, I’m going to make an exception. Not because it’s John Smedley or because of the inevitable rumors that the truck backing into my parking lot is carrying a payload of money.
So let’s get the basics out of the way: Hero’s Song is a point and click ARPG in development by Pixelmage Games and the notorious John Smedley himself. You can join worlds that other players have created or create one yourself and let other people join in. I’m not sure how fleshed out this feature is, but it looks pretty cool. You select a number of gods, give them varying levels of influence on the world, and hit generate. With your creation, the game builds ten thousand years of wars, treaties, slavery, and conquest. In my world, the dwarfs went to war with pretty much everyone and, while they won most of the time, somehow ended up being enslaved by the defeated race. A lot.
I started out in the city of Sowkirk, which I assume is randomly generated from a list, and immediately find that the Tenab elves in my vicinity are non-hostile but could be attacked. I like this idea, since the game seems to have a ton of varieties to each race, of pulling up that old Everquest system where your relation with each race was fluid and partially based off of your chosen race. If this is what the developers are going for, it is unfinished since I couldn’t find a race relations menu.
Since they don’t seem to hate me, I don’t massacre the populace and I make my way out of the nearby gates. In fact, many of the elves are quite nice and stand around having dialogue with one another. Eventually a few of the elves get into a fight and start killing one another, I assume this is a bug. Heading south and around the barrier, I found myself in the sights of a group of orcs, the leader of which immediately shouted something about splitting my skull open.
Well you can’t make friends with everyone.
My character is a Paladin, because this is an alpha and if there is any class that would be overpowered it would be the Paladin. There isn’t a whole lot to do in the game right now, mostly running around and killing mobs, leveling up, and checking out what skills you have available.
There are a ton of classes and races, making me wonder if Smedley walked off with some design documents from Everquest Next embedded in his brain. I’d actually like to see some of those features implemented in this title, and the roots certainly seem to be present. Enemies wander around and I quite often saw orcs in battle either with my elven friends or with ghouls/zombies of the night. It’d be interesting if the game not only was a generated world but a living one with roaming enemies that set up camp and can be wiped out.
Eventually the game is going to have functions like quests, and hopefully a working map. The world is gigantic, and there is currently no way of telling where you are. The world generator said it spawned about two thousand dungeons but I have my doubts. Either that or the world truly is gigantic and desperately needs a way of telling where you are.
Regardless, I am definitely interested in Hero’s Song and will be covering it more as Pixelmage adds in features.