Game Review: Rusty Hearts (F2P)

Rusty Hearts came across my computer while I was looking for “newer” games to try on my fancy new laptop. The previews and reviews online described how the game took us back to the glory days of Double Dragon, Golden Axe, and Streets of Rage. Being a fan of old-school smash-em’-up games (and being old….) I was instantly interested. After a relatively quick download I ventured into the gothic setting to slay hordes of monsters, buy some cool clothes for my character, and review the game to see if it delivers action and a good time!

Rusty Hearts is a free online MMORPG developed by Stairway Games and distributed by Perfect World Entertainment. In this anime-inspired game, the player takes on the role of one of three characters (a fourth is coming later) who fights against the menacing vampire lord, Vlad. While there is a storyline in the game, the focus is on fighting. You’ll fight your way through countless dungeons, slaying armies of hideous monsters, to defend the citizens of the realm from the festering evil.

The gameplay of Rusty Hearts focuses on action, action, and even more action. While described as an MMORPG, Rusty Hearts is a fighting game wrapped within a storyline. You’ll pick one of the three characters to play, each with their own fighting style. If you’re looking for the holy trinity of DPS, tank, and healer, you’ll search in vain. Your main option of character will Determine how you decide to kick the monsters ass: swords and axes (Franz), magic sword and scythe (Angela), or gauntlet and claw (tude). From my time in the game ( one week ) I managed to reach the level cap without actually doing any theory crafting on how to play and just went with it. There is no “wrong” way to play a character; which is really neat after stepping away from WoW where there is only really one way to maximize your dps.

The premise is refreshing simple. You get quests from various townspeople, which you fulfill by going into a dungeon. Each dungeon is comprised of several different areas (smaller dungeons) with suggested level ranges suggested for each. You can enter each specific dungeon as many times as you wish; you don’t even need a quest to enter one. You get xp by killing monsters, completing the dungeon, and also by finishing quests. Each dungeon is comprised of numerous rooms, each filled with slavering hordes of monsters, which you need to kill in order to move on to another room. At the end of each dungeon, you’ll face off against a boss monster and his minions. Once you defeat him, you get some random loot by using cards that you pick up from dead monsters as you travel. Once you’ve finished a dungeon, you can repeat the dungeon, use a store to sell loot and repair, or return to the town. Once you’ve finished a dungeon on the normal setting, you can then enter it on hard mode, then very hard mode, and if your especially “core” you can venture into Blood mode. The Blood mode is basically insanity and you really need to group for them.

The game is ridiculously addictive. It’s tremendous fun if you’re looking for an action MMO. You’ll be button mashing like mad to do cool combos and trying to improve your “style” points as you go through a dungeon. The action is the centerpiece of the game and it shines. Your various abilities are executed in a cool manner and you look bad-ass as you plow through mobs of creatures, dishing out their deserved retribution.

Anyways, after roughly a week of screwin’ around with it I can say it’s worth a look if you are after a completely brainless game and you love the old arcade beat-em-ups!

Score: 9
Full Game Price: Free! (costs to purchase costume pieces for character customization)

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