Hellgate – The Revival Of A Lost Treasure
October 4, 2011
Hellgate London (Now Free to play check it out here.)
What can be said about this amazing game that has not been said in a million other ways? This game is the best bit of true RPG left in what used to be a great company named Blizzard. Flagship Studios, a smaller group formerly known as Blizzard North, created this title under their own newly created name shortly after their major production known to most by the name Diablo 2. This was to be an unofficial release of a futuristic Diablo setting. Most people figured it for the Diablo 3 that so many people sought after years of waiting for Blizzard to do anything with the still strong franchise. I was one of these people and thus went out in 2007 on release day and bought it in the collectors edition format which netted me a nice BIG box that all the contents came in as well as an awesome comic book that told the story of the start of Hellgate London. In synapse, think of the Paladins guild of Diablo 2 finding openings of gates to hell much as were seen in act 5 of Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction. They are now banding together and gathering new recruits to fight against the droves of minions spawning from the hole out of hell.
Now on to my review:
The game being released in 2007 has some last generation graphics being stuck in the realm of late DX9 to early DX10. That being said, the graphics are exceptional for the platform and date. They take the world into a dark and almost steampunk feel early on into an apocalyptic hell later. Blending the old world with the new has long been a hard concept for developers to make happen in a way that is acceptable and revered. Flagship Studios did this amazingly.
The view of the items and paperdoll are strikingly similar to Diablo 2 as seen in the following image here.
The game functions as it should, with years under its belt many of the original bugs have been found and fixed. Hellgate is great in its own ability to be playable even on low end machines. It bolsters the ability to both look amazing and wretched but still retain all of the playability any one person could want.
With this, you have a choice of how to play the game, in FPS mode or 3rd person. The ability to change play style on the fly with a flick of the mouse wheel makes the game that much more diverse.
The storyline while full with quests here and there feels much the same as it did with Diablo 2, lacking. After going through the game on Normal mode you find that you were very easily able to note the storylines plot almost word for word. Though memorable it feels stagnant, in the way that it has all been done miserably before.
The best part of Hellgate has always been its multiplayer. It is very similar to that of Guild Wars in that the quest hubs are open to all players together and the venturing parts of the game are instanced. This makes questing so much nicer since trolls cant easily train you or steal mobs. This also makes it so that you can play alone when you want to and not be bothered by others while questing if you choose.