Warning: The following was composed while the game was released in Early Access Build 0.7.2. [2014/02/13]
Please understand that the game is still in development and when the game is updated the information in this review may be obsolete. When the development surpasses Early Access Build 0.7.2 you may be able to use this review to compare how the game has changed over development.
Rogue-like games are normally games which offer some form of level randomization or procedural generator and permanent death; your character dies and you must either start over or keep going until everything is lost. These types of games are normally unforgiving. With Magicite this concept is taken to its very sadistic core.
Side-scrolling games are normally progressed by moving on the screen to the right or left to reach the end of the stage or meet some type of goal. Goals like ‘saving a princess’ from the big bad, but she happens to be in another castle. These games normally follow some type of gimmick, like the stage progresses on its own, timed, forcing you to advance.
Also with a Rogue-like game the graphics are not normally the main focus, thus if you are turned off by anything below 3D graphics you should consider something else.
Please note, this is /not/ a sandbox construction game due to just having crafting, you currently do not 'build' anything. If that is what your looking for, you are truely in the wrong castle.
This will be a breakdown of concept and features, atmosphere and stability.
Concept / Features
This is a 2D Side scrolling Rouge-like with item crafting.
Right now the game has currency which is dropped when monsters are killed along with experience points. Currency can be used to buy random items from towns, which are in between levels.
You create a character and can keep re-rolling stats with two perks before starting, after that you thrust into generated levels with death. Personally I kept generating until I has a perk which allows me to open chests without keys and kept raiding the dungeon stage due to high chest generation.
It has crafting related to inventory management; making weapons, armor and items. Beyond that this is not a sandbox and you do not build anything. Towns appear in between levels. If you stay on a level to long, well you’re going meet death.
The interface is rather clean and easy to use after you have it down, however it can be somewhat frustrating at the start due to it just throws the player into the mix without hints.
Many functions are not implemented currently, like a crafting recipe log. However I’m sure they soon will be.
When you reach level five, ten and 15 you are able to pick a level up spell/benefit which is accessed by using 1, 2 and 3 respectively from the keyboard.
In order to make armors you are going to need to collect ore and smelt it while in a town. You will need three of the same ingots to make the armor.
Multiplayer is a blast, however you must watch what you do and share resources otherwise, being doomed to fail comes to mind.
Quick and to the point, much is not needed beyond the objective.
The art is decent and fits. The music is a mixed bag, the tracks are rather decent however I found myself wanted something more fasted paced. For some odd reason I pictured more of a old style arcade type feel for music, something like those action based games like funky fighter.
There are in game bugs related to items and crafting.
Overall the game had very slight hangs, they where not consistent, not a major problem. It also /did not/ crash on older machines I tested with. I tried on older desktop machines and laptops under windows Vista and Windows 7; it was decent and was not a complete resource hog allowing me to multitask by pausing with ESC.
I also did not run into any critical errors which cased instability and the program failed to run.
While I’m unable to speak for everyone and their systems it seems to be overall pretty solid. Most of the time games in alpha or beta still are unstable while this game seems to be nicely polished in respect to stability in the listed windows environments.
Multiplayer was decent, there is much talk about friendly fire, currently this feature feels like it hits home, and with the fact that this game is sadistic. While I do not think that Magicite should 'force' players to have to deal spacing of teammates and friendly fire, I feel that it should be and on and off switch for the host. While friendly damage is on there should be higher rewards or benefits beyond being up to the challenge.
If you like Rogue-like games, I would currently recommend this. If you do not like Rogue-likes I would not recommend this, since this game is truly sadistic at its core. If you happen to be the supreme overlord of your minions, *ahem* friends and are willing to subjugate them to wallow in punishment and death, the more the merrier.
Gameplay suggestions: http://steamcommunity.com/app/268750/discussions/0/540733523379927400/