tfl;dfr : A pretty good free 50 ~ 1337 hour game with good gameplay mechanics.
This is a review of the actual game, not going to mentioning my unbelievable lag because of how far I lived from the servers. Not mentioning how much the community in pvp complains like no tomorrow or how the developers only updates the game with actual content once every 2 years. Nope, none of that, no where in this guide shall I write about any of that.
Spiral knights is developed by three rings design ( also the developers of the popular online puzzle game, puzzle pirates ) and published by sega. Spiral knights ( SK ) is a Hack 'n slash MMORPG zelda type game.
SK is a 2D imensional game in a 3D environment. It has a birdseye view, slightly tilted so that you can see a lot more going on at the top than in the bottom-- I don't need to go over this stuff, right?
SK is a dungeon crawler based game, it's not sandbox/open world.
There are a crap load of weapons. There are three main weapon types
And then for each of these, there are 4 types of damage, normal, elemental, shadow and piercing. And then some of them have status effects, Stun, fire, freeze, etc.
You basically hit stuff until they die. There's a shield button too, but it's better to kill things before they get a chance to even touch you.
Swords are easier to use than guns. I can't speak for bombs as I have not used them much before.
For swords, all you really need to do in PvE is the same thing as cookie clicker except that you click untill they die. You need to learn a few more 'advanced' gameplay mechanics for gunning in order to avoid the reload so that a lot more guns become viable to use. The mechanics don't take more than a day to learn and that's about as hard as the game gets. PvE wise, at least.
There is a mission mode for PvE which help you get from one tier to the next. You do set levels and get the one-time rewards. However, they are repeatable and you can still get the dropped loot from monsters and treasure boxes.
The (not so) main mode now for PvE is the arcade. Randomly generated levels that you can play through, getting progressively harder every 4 levels or depths, with a mini-town in between which we call strata's e.g. 'Strata 4' would be levels 13 ~ 17.
There are 4 bosses in total, with 1 additional DLC boss.
And many different variants / types of monsters to beat up.
This game's gear is gained through crafting. ( which reminded me of dark cloud 2 / dark chronicle which I loved very much when I was younger )
They are split into stars. 1*, 2*, 3*, 4* and 5 stars.
Getting stronger as you go up, Duh.
You purchase recipes from NPC's or other players and find the materials required for making the gear. And then you've got to get alchemy orbs. They are a fairly rare drop from treasure boxes and you need 3 of the same orb, that is the same star as the gear you want to make or upgrade to. Though these orbs can be found anywhere in PvE treasure boxes, you can also spend real money to get 'Energy' in order to buy these orbs. Though, unlike many other MMO's, you can buy energy from other players with in-game currency dropped by monsters. It acts like a stock market.
From start to end ( 1* ~> 5* ) I'd say it would take about a good 100 ~ 150 hours if you're new to the game ( from personal experience ). 50 if you're buying your way through it although the game's a lot more fun when you take your time. SK is a lot of fun with friends too, up to a 4 man co-op party in PvE.
There are currently 3 sprites in-game. They give passive bonuses as well as 3 different skills for each pet.
They're not much but they're there.
PvP - The end-game stuff that's a lot harder than PvE. ( There's also a pvp mode called bomber ma-- I mean blast network )
In SK, PvP ( Player vs Player ) is called Lockdown ( LD ). LD may look easy and cool at first and it's easy to pick up and get kil-- play* though You need to know ( a poop load ) more game mechanics to be good at PvP in SK. The learning curve is what kept me in the game after all these hours. In PvP, there is a huge skill leap from PvE and because of this, many players get discouraged and don't play it at all. But PvP is a wonderful thing in SK, you can kill people and win.
There are 3 different classes for PvP
Guardian, Striker and Recon.
Guardian has a huge shield that protects team mates within a certain radius from enemy attacks
Recon can cloak / go invisible and juke people to death
Striker(S) with two capital s' coz most people play strikers. Can walk prettay fast and dodge and run.
They all give different stat boosts and debuffs ( unboosts? Disboost? Inboost? ) and play differently.
And though a lot of people say there isn't much content, ( probably after playing for at least 200 hours, yes, if you don't pvp after or try new weapons/armour, there probably is a lack of content after 200, 200. Two hundred hours ) there is at least 100 hours of content with great gameplay mechanics and this is free. FREE . The game is still being updated and has events every few months.
Thank-you for reading this painstakingly long review.
Spiral knights is a good game with easy to grasp, hard to be good at, mechanics and I have enjoyed my time with it very, very much.