I have recently fallen in love with downloadable games. I think it all started with Shank, and now I have wanted to play only the best of downloadable games. I saved up for a couple PSN cards and downloaded a few games, with enough left over for two games in the future to download. I was thinking of what game to follow up Shank with that was amazing and fun to play. It had to have a great sense of humor and was epically silly. Then it came to me, DEATHSPANK! Now, at first I wasn’t that excited, but when I heard that it was made by the guy who worked on the Monkey Island series of computer games, my interest was raised a little. It’s a fun and creative game that is just a blast, but I need to say why it rocks so much. It is one of those perfect examples of how to make a great downloadable game. So, let’s vanquish evil with the power of Deathspank.
The main story tells of a tale of a hero with the oddest name ever, Deathspank, as he delivers justice and vanquishes foes! He is on a never-ending quest to find the artifact simply known as The Artifact, while killing everything in sight and stopping an evil villain known as Lord Von Prong. The story is lighthearted, and doesn’t really take itself seriously, so this means that you shouldn’t take it seriously either. If you do, there is something wrong with you.
The main gameplay in Deathspank is like the popular PC game, Diablo. You are basically stuck in an isometric view from above as you control Deathspank. It also seems like Deathspank himself loves weapons so much that the four face buttons on the controller are mapped out as 4 different weapons, which is awesome. This means no tedious platforming in this game. The main goal in the game is to take on 23 main quests, and if you want to, take on over 70 side quests! That is insane, since this is a downloadable game that cost 15 dollars and you basically have 8 to 12 hours of game. That is definitely worth every dollar. You go through the game upgrading weapons and armor by buying them or completing quests to level up certain areas like speed, attack, defense, how much money you get in battle, how strong your range attacks are, and you get the idea. There is a lot of grinding if you’re into that, since it’s not as tedious as it is in other RPG/action games. You can also play with a second person that will play as a wizardly character that can assist you in some of the tougher battles. Plus, it is always fun to go through a big game with two people. Oh, and since Deathspank has a limited amount of space to carry stuff, you can grind old armor and weapons into cash, which helps out in the long run when armor starts to get pricey. You can also gain items to solve old-fashioned adventure-style quests, or to pull off super moves with two specific items. There is definitely a huge amount of stuff for you to do in this game.
The graphics look awesome. It’s a mix of 3D characters and 2D-style art that combines into a very creative looking package. In my humble opinion, a lot of the enemies and characters are creatively well designed with a very Monkey Island look to them. It isn’t a surprise though that I think that, due to the designer being Ron Gilbert who worked on a good chunk of the Monkey Island series. Since this is the case, the writing has to be very funny and clever, which it is! This has to be some of the most well executed jokes ever. I mean granted, I don’t know anyone who has completed every single quest, but it makes you want to, since in my experience, I wanted to hear every single thing people had to say. It also helps with some pretty good voice acting, with Michael Dobson leading the charge as the role of Deathspank. The music is also just as addictive. I don’t know how many times I turned on the game just to listen to the menu music while typing some reviews. You pretty much have a great overall package. I know I keep saying that this is a great package, but I really mean it. This is basically an archetype of how good downloadable games should be made.
However, as much as I love this game to death, there are some minor, minor faults. At times, I thought the adventure element was kind of confusing, but it didn’t really get in my way as much as games like Monkey Island do, though maybe it’s because I didn’t grow up with these kinds of games. The major complaint I keep hearing is that the quests get repetitious, and I have to honestly agree. While it isn’t as much of a burden through some parts of the game, it gets annoying since sometimes you have to tread back and forward to one spot multiple times instead of just going there for the multiple things that are in that area. It’s like “get me this thing” then you run for 5 minutes to get the item and 5 minutes back. Then it’s like “ okay, you got me that thing, now go back to that same area and get me something there also”. It made me wonder why I couldn’t just get everything there instead of just having to go back and forward. I couldn’t really complain that much about it though, due to the clever and funny dialogue that is thrown into the game.
So, that is my review of Deathspank, and boy did I have a blast with this game! Great controls, an awesome soundtrack, witty writing, creative graphics, an amazingly likable hero, and like I said before, a great package that is definitely worth the 15 dollars. I mean it also, go buy this game! It’s really solid and I think you all would like it very very much. It has been awhile since I have had as much fun as I had with a game like this.
This game gets a solid 9 out of 10