Rogue Legacy grants players control of an entire lineage of knights, and I feel terrible about it. The reason why I feel so guilty is that I have exploited generations of warriors simply to pillage Castle Hamson of its fortunes, in order to make smart investments for future progeny, improving their maximum health, armour or attack damage so that I may one day overthrow the castle.
Rogue Legacy’s excellence lies in its replayability: think Infinity Blade meets Castlevania. As soon as I die, I’m planning the next run, choosing a descendant from three based on his or her inherited traits: class, magic ability and potential ailments. I’m not planning on beating the bosses in every run, though, I’m simply looking to earn enough coins so that the next character is even stronger than the previous, so that the fourth or fifth generation might be able to beat The Maya.
The basic gameplay mechanics are simple, but depth is found in the wonderful variety of enemy types, the clearly-defined locations, finding blueprints and runes to customise armour and abilities and of course your own castle, which is where coins are spent to improve basic stats.
The story can be unravelled by finding books hidden throughout the castle. This isn't a necessity, of course, with the option to skip past and read the journal entries either at a later date or not at all.
A lot of time will be spent the first location, earning coins so that you become strong enough to move through the rest of the game, which can sometimes feel like a grind, especially when foes become too easy even with runes equipped to increase difficulty.
Despite this Rogue Legacy is an excellent game, and one that is certainly deserving of your attention. With Cross-Buy and Cross-Save functionality, it’s a perfect companion on the train, too. I just hope the Legacy family can forgive my exploitation, as once I (of course, I mean we) finally overcome Castle Hamson, it’ll all be worth it.
Versions tested: PS4 and PS Vita.
*Reviewer's Note* Due to the post-traumatic stress of destroying this family of knights, and my own eagerness, I was unaware that I could return to the player's castle to spend coins before entering the game, a point I made in the original review, and have since corrected.
8 / 10
- Strong challenge.
- Great art style.
- Incredible replay value.
- Can feel restricted to certain areas for long spells.