Orcs & Elves Review
Orcs & Elves box art
System: DS Review Rating Legend
Dev: Fountainhead / Id Software 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: EA Games 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Nov. 13, 2007 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Teen 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Other than the relatively powerful spells you can cast, combat will require you to drink a lot of potions and Elvish and Dwarven ales to buff your character. Fortunately, the quick access to in-game menus is great. A first person view of your character's body and utility belt is rendered on the touch screen. This utility belt functions as the menu screen. Tapping the various objects on your belt will allow you to access your potions, inventory, game saves, maps, etc. The presentation is pretty crude, but it functions very well.

Orcs & Elves screenshot

The monsters that you will encounter are many in number, but few in variety. I do like the fact that they have distinct characteristics, however. Some monsters, like the troll, are big and strong and will knock you backward. Worgs are fast and can attack multiple times. Trackers cloak themselves and teleport away after an attack. Green Slime monsters are tough both in the damage they deal early in the game and the sheer beating they can take. Additionally, if you leave an undefiled corpse on the ground the slime will absorb it and heal itself. Moreover, different weapons and spells will do more damage on some monsters than they will on others. I really like this aspect of the game. It adds complexity to combat, however there aren't that many different kinds of monsters. You will quickly master how to best each beast after just a couple of encounters. It is kind of like the old school Final Fantasy games in that way. Encounters become monotonous and tiresome, rather than being interesting and strategy based.

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Orcs & Elves is a simple dungeon crawler that harkens back to the FPS PC games of old. The graphics, combat, and puzzle elements are crude and uninventive. The game isn't awful, but it isn't very fun either. There are no role-playing features to speak of other than the auto-leveling of your character and the collection of loot. If you really liked Doom, you may like this game because the similarities are numerous. However, if your looking for a deep yet portable RPG for your DS, this is not the one.

By Jonathan Marx
CCC Freelance Writer

Features:

  • Explore a Dungeon Teeming with Adventure: Travel through a Dwarven citadel's twelve massive levels, each riddled with evil forces and ancient treasure.
  • Put your Best RPG Strategies to the Test: Solve devious puzzles, overcome deadly traps, and battle massive forces of foul beasts.
  • Master Unique Weapons and Items: Wield extraordinary weapons including a sentient wand, a powerful warhammer, and magic swords. Use the DS Touch Screen to cast spells and make use of magic potions, enchanted rings, and dragonscale armor.
  • Unravel an Award-Winning Storyline: With over ten hours of handheld gaming, escape to a place of adventure, mystery, and sorcery with Orcs & Elves, the new first-person adventure from id Software and Fountainhead Entertainment.
  • New For the DS: A 3D game engine, new creatures, three new levels, new potions, and four new spells will thrill even the most seasoned adventurer, giving them reason to journey back into Zharrharag


    RATING OUT OF 5
    RATING DESCRIPTION
    2.0
    Graphics
    The visuals are poor and pixelated.
    3.5
    Control
    The controls are very user friendly, but they make combat overly simplistic.
    2.5
    Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
    They are no better than the visuals, but they don't hinder gameplay and the score is original.
    3.0

    Play Value
    The distinct monster characteristics are a positive, but the monotonous combat and mediocre story are drawbacks.

    3.0
    Overall Rating - Fair
    Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
  • Screenshots / Images
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