Arcade Game Review: Realms of Ancient War (R.A.W) XBLA/PSN/PC

Realms of Ancient War, known to many as R.A.W is an Action Role Playing Game which was released on Xbox Live Arcade & Playstation Network only but a few days ago, but is it worth the money Focus Home Interactive asks for? Well I’m here to help you find out.

Story: The story is pretty simple, there’s a war between Humans, Dwarfs and Elves, the Kings of each corner of the land go to a summit formed by the Northern King to sort out a truce. But that doesn’t go to plan (for which isn’t explained)  and whichever character you choose gets embroiled in this war in their own ‘unique’ way.

Gameplay: The game’s controls are very simple, it’s largely dominated by the color buttons, throughout the whole game. I found myself merely moving the left stick and tapping A, against hordes of enemies. While it sounds interesting enough, the fact that it is incredibly easy to die and believe me, it is likely you will die a lot in this game. It’s easy to either forget to use your health potion or that you get slaughtered. The game features co-op, but sadly at the time, it was only local co-op and not online, which did disappoint me. But the most fun I got out of the game was playing it with my best friend.  I’m not saying it’s a bad game, but I never got into it at any point, the enemies just feel the same to fight but just with purely a different character model, and I did get lost even with help from the compass.

Sound: The sound doesn’t stand out in-game, there is very little to be desired here in one’s opinion.  It didn’t help engross me in the game and believe me when I say I’ve heard worse soundtracks, but I’ve also heard many better. I think the sound could have been used better. But even if it was good, that couldn’t save much of what I think of the game.

Style: The style is pretty nice, it’s got some nice environments to fight through, from ice to forest to wild west style. The environments you visit are probably the best thing about the game. I do wish you could see your enemies and yourself better, the distance between the camera and your character is something that I wish could be changed. Equipping picked up items was a struggle too in the sense that the game isn’t very friendly for smaller TV’s. It is incredibly hard to read the text without moving closer to the TV. It’s like the issue Dead Rising had with standard TV’s.

Final Thoughts: R.A.W isn’t a terrible game, no, but it doesn’t shine out to me at any point. The controls are simple, which is not a bad thing, just the gameplay really does let it down. I really hoped I’d get into it at some point, but sadly I didn’t. It’s an average game, the co-op also being restricted to local and no online at the time was  disappointing.  Before anyone rushes out to buy it, I plead for you to play the demo rather than just buying it, to make sure you will like it or not.

Final Score

2/5

Review by: Michael Robinson

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