There is a subset of gamers that really intrigues me: the type that slaves away hunched over their monitors, doing the same repetitive task over and over, with only the faintest glimmer of hope for a reward at the end of their trials. I’ve never much been into games that require excessive grinding, or for the player to invest a lot of their time for that shiny trinket that is only marginally better than the previous one, but each to their own I suppose. So, when Overture landed in my inbox I wasn’t exactly overcome with joy, but I wasn’t filled with trepidation either.
Overture is reminiscent of Realm of the Mad God, Diablo and even, to an extent, The Binding of Isaac. It sticks you in the middle of a vast, randomly generated dungeon with hundreds of bad guys and tasks you with fighting your way out, and that’s pretty much a wrap for the game’s main features. You’ll do all the usual Action RPG things, like collecting better gear and upping your stats, but, ultimately, not much changes as a result of that. Yes, you will be fighting horde after horde of bad guys, and bosses, over and over again, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. My dislike for repetitious games aside, Overture is a well designed, smart game that will give a certain crowd of gamers with hours of action.
While the game is certainly a one trick pony, there are lots of ways you can approach it. With 4 different classes and 24 different characters, each with their own attacks, there’s something here for every type of player. So, whether you want to be a warrior right in among the action with blood dripping from your blade, or an archer taking potshots from a safe distance, you’ll find a character to suit your tastes.
Once you have chosen a class you are slung straight into the action, but not before you’ve seen the handy control scheme tutorial. Playing the game is as simple as using the left mouse button to attack and the right mouse button to special attack. If you find yourself in a pinch you can hot tail it out of there by moving toward your mouse cursor, which will send you off at great speed. There’s a bit of a knack to mastering Overture‘s “hit and run” style of gameplay, but once you have you’ll be tearing up countless undead, blobs and other indescribable evil doers.
Gameplay is simple and formulaic, and you’ll wander through each floor looking to pick a fight with scores of different mobs at the same time, and the odd elite as well. You’ll occasionally come across a mini boss which are harder to kill than normal mobs, before having to take on a much more difficult boss.
You’ll be accruing experience and levelling up as you kill enemies, increasing your stats ever so slightly, whilst bolstering them further with various pieces of armour you’ll receive from chests and enemies. You’ll also gather companions that you’ve freed from the clutches of the enemy, and they’ll fight alongside you.
If Overture was a candy bar it would be the most sugary, mouth-watering bar on the market, the kind that dilates pupils and causes synapses to fire uncontrollably. Its action is swift and meaty, with just enough danger to keep you on your toes. It also rewards even the slightest amount of skill with lashings of blood and a hail of gold coins, that is sure to intensify the “candy bar” effect I mentioned above.
One thing I don’t understand though is why it features no local coop, though, Overture is the perfect game for playing on the couch with a buddy. I’ll call it an oversight and not a missed opportunity, in the hope that Black Shell Games adds this feature in later.
While Overture hasn’t made me a total convert, it has, at the very least, allowed me to understand the appeal of difficult grindy games, and that’s a beat I can dance to.