Eternity Warriors 2 Android Impressions: Death By Giant Skeleton
Last month, mobile dungeon crawlers took a huge step forward with Chillingo's iOS hack-fest, Orc: Vengeance, a game that seamlessly blends user-friendly touch controls with Diablo-style gameplay. At the time of its release, we wondered which rival publisher would step up to the plate with something on par with or better, and it appears we just received the answer from Glu Mobile. After playing the first few levels from the company's free-to-play Eternity Warriors 2, we're happy to report that, thus far, this loud, intense and in-your-face title appears to tick all the right boxes, delivering an experience that's part Diablo, part God of War.
The first thing that jumped out was how fast-paced and fluid the game is. Despite impressive advancements in smartphone and tablet graphics, we tend to expect performance dips in games with so much happening at once, but Eternity Warriors 2 manages to handle its brutal action like a champ. The hero quickly zips through the environments without noticeable stuttering, and the app can push at least seven enemies on screen at once. When you consider all the blood and loot flying around, along with special Rage attacks, this is an eye-opener.
In regards to story, there's not much to tell, we're afraid. In fact, the game dropped us right into the tutorial, but let's face it. You probably won't download Eternity Warriors 2 to immerse yourself in the fiction. You want to carve demons to pieces with powerful weapons, and the game lets you do just that.
With this in mind, combat is both thrilling and simplistic. You have a floating analog stick on the left side of the screen that appears wherever a thumb is placed, and a single attack button you can mash for hours. On top of that, a Rage button (when pressed), sends the hero into pulverizing dash and (when pressed repeatedly) spin attacks. Very useful against large groups of baddies, but calling upon it depletes the Rage meter. Finally, the game has a block button, and what's especially cool about it is the ability to parry attacks, but this is much easier to do than in most video games. Even better, doing it successfully results in an auto-attack that comes in handy when battling giant bosses.
Of course, it being a dungeon crawler, Eternity Warriors 2 appears to have a wealth of loot to collect, in addition to coins left behind by fallen foes. You'll happen upon axes, swords and maces in your travels. Conversely, you can also purchase items at the in-game shop, along with health and rage potions. Glu even has bundles for sale, giving you the opportunity to acquire a weapon, sword and crystals at a reduced price.
What do crystals do? While not 100 percent sure, these precious gems appear to play a role in upgrading weapons, with two options available. You can gamble by spending coins, where the upgrade may fail, or achieve a 100 percent upgrade using Glu Credits (we expect Glu to change this currency for the iOS version). Gems basically negate the gamble. How difficult they are to come by remains to be seen.
Finally, there's a skill tree, where you can boost the warrior's Dash, Block and Charge attacks. For example, you're free to add a spin move to Dash, or increase damage by 15 percent.
Granted, we still have a long way to go (there's also the whole freemium concept to consider, along with iOS stability), but so far, there's a lot to love about Eternity Warriors 2. It may be light on plot, but when it comes to mindless button mashing through legions of ugly creatures, it would appear this title more than delivers. That said, look for our Eternity Warriors 2 review later this week, along with cheats and tips.
[Editor's Note: Eternity Warriors 2 is currently available on Android, and should appear on iOS sometime this Thursday.]