When a studio runs a Kickstarter that successfully hits the mark on its funding goal, it is always exciting to see the result. Fictorum is one such title developed by Scraping Bottom Games and is a third person, action roguelike RPG with destructible environments and procedural events. With so much promise, does Fictorum live up to it?
The core gameplay of Fictorum revolves around wielding and combining magic to legendary levels of power. By using a dynamic spell shaping system, you are able to not just cast a spell but also affect it and shape it in many different ways. By equipping up to three runes to a spell, a player can change the power, speed or even effect of the casted spell. With a number of different runes to equip and change on the fly there are tons of options to create the line up of spells that suit your playstyle. Furthermore, the intense and powerful spellcasting can be enjoyed from both third and first person.
Thanks to the fully-destructible structures you will find that you can have a ton of fun with the many ways you can bring them down. This destruction allows the player to create a bunch of new options for approaching a situation and how to take out your foes. Should you feel that blowing a building up or bringing a wall down on people is not exciting enough then perhaps throwing them through the building will do it for you. Then again nothing beats taking the bridge out from under the feet of a charging horde of enemies and watching them fall to their death. My personal favorite was to pick a person up using the telekinesis ability and then smashing them around through waves of enemies and buildings.
What is interesting about the progression with Fictorum is that it happens in a procedural node-based world map which feels very much like Faster Than Light. You move from node to node each with their own events that unfold at each one. As you move from one side of the table to the other the Inquisition, that destroyed all you have, will move on step closer to you. Your goal is to keep moving forward, making the gap between you and the Inquisition as big as you can and continue developing your skills. As not every node you travel to will throw you into an action sequences some will give you text choices that lead to more story or rewards. Worth noting is that your health does not refill in between events meaning you must heal when possible or rest when you can. That said, every action you do will see the Inquisition moving one step closer so finding the balance of how to progress forward is key.
As a game that relies on procedural content it is understandable that the performance might take a hit. Thankfully, the frame rate remains high even during the most chaotic moments and runs smooth so you can focus on dealing out the damage. The visual style and sound design might seem a bit old fashion but it all works together to be a consistent style throughout gameplay and menus.
The issues with Fictorum start to show in the form of repetitive events and gameplay. The destructible environments help to keep things fresh and give you options but even with that you will start to run out of fuel in time. It doesn’t help that most of the enemies will just run at you with next to no interesting movements or behaviours. It is worth noting however, that even if the events become a bit repetitive you can still have plenty of fun mixing the magic and creative explosive results.
As a whole Fictorum is a solid idea that is delivered in a stable and enjoyable experience. The game might look and feel a bit dated but don’t let that put you off what is a brilliant title. If you can get yourself lost in it’s spellcasting and shaping mechanic then you will find a lot of fun to be had. Fictorum is a smart idea that makes all of its promises come true and it’s worth taking the time to check this title out, you won’t regret it.
Fictorum (Reviewed on Windows)
This game is good, with a few negatives.
Fictorum deliveries on the promises it makes and is an enjoyable experience. It might look and feel a bit dated don’t let that put you off what is a brilliant title. If you can get yourself lost in it’s spellcasting and shaping mechanic then you will find a lot of fun to be had.