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Monday, January 5, 2009
 

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Adventuring In Kivi's Underworld
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Jay is Games has published a new review of Soldak Entertainment's casual action RPG, Kivi's Underworld. Set in the same world as Depths of Peril, Kivi's Underworld allows players to adventure as one of 20 character classes against a variety of dangerous foes. Jay is Games recommended Kivi's Underworld to fans of casual action RPGs.

From the review:

The controls and combat system are extremely intuitive, and pretty effective when it comes to dishing out damage and keeping your defenses up. Just point the mouse to the spot you'd like to move to and left-click, or hold the button down to "auto-walk" and you'll keep following the mouse cursor. Click the left mouse button while the cursor is hovering an enemy (or a destroyable object) to use your main attack, or keep it pressed to auto-attack. Same deal with your special ability, which is controlled using the right mouse button. Various hot-keys are assigned (and configurable) for commonly-used actions, like opening your quest and character interfaces. Pushing [Space] will let you quickly use the lowest-placed power-up in your power-up box (which can hold up to three, collected from monster drops and chests--more on these later). Pretty much everything you can control with the mouse by clicking the icons on your UI can be done with keyboard. Tip: the exception seemed to be the ability to toggle item nameplates on and off, which can be done by pressing [Alt]. It's a handy feature when the screen feels too cluttered, or conversely, when you're having trouble seeing an item on the floor.

The streamlined control lends itself well with the gameplay. In keeping with the hack-n-slash theme of Kivi's Underworld, hindrances to action are minimal. The whole game is basically just a series of dungeon runs, but the characters, monsters, quests and abilities keep the game positioned right inside the sweet spot between action and adventure. Each "level" of the game (called adventures) features a single dungeon, some with multiple underground levels. Actually, "dungeon" might not be the best word for every adventure, because some of them have an outdoor setting, even though they are all self-contained. There's a main quest objective in each level, as well as side-quests or achievement goals (like killing 20 zombies or finding all the secret rooms). Your score is paramount to character progression, and you get points for almost everything (even achievement "feats" like attacking the first monster in an adventure before it attacks you). At the end of each adventure, your score is tallied and determines whether you receive a bronze, silver or gold "trophy," which awards you one, two or three skill points to spend, respectively.
Head over to the Jay is Games website to read the full review.

Jay Is Games: Kivi's Underworld Review
Soldak Entertainment
Kivi's Underworld


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