Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Xbox 360 - Hunted: The Demon's Forge

Hunted: The Demon's Forge by Bethesda

Type: Third Person Co-Op Shooter
Save Type: Checkpoint

Hunted: The Demon's Forge is a third person co-op campaign shooter with the second player character played by AI. You can switch between the characters only when you reach certain portals. This is a checkpoint save based game. The trouble with this game isn't the AI or the game itself, it's the graphics. In a word, horrible. If you like game throwbacks to the late 90's (ala Xbox original quality), then you'll probably like this game. If not, you should probably rent this first.


You are a team of two (a human man and an elf.. at least, I think she's an elf). Anyway, you're roaming the countryside when you come upon a woman who appears out of a time distortion portal. She tells you you need to collect death stones and give them to her to gain the power to defeat the enemy. Well, you can see where this is heading. So, you give her the stones and you're taken to a level up menu to equip yourself better (both in spells and in combat).


The controls are a bit overly sensitive, so the tiniest camera movement moves the screen around almost instantly. Other than the sensitivity issue, HDF plays pretty much like any other action third person shooter. You roam the level, kill lots of creatures (skeletons and other dead-ish looking creatures) and collect gold and crystals to buy upgrades. In addition to the standard fare of killing the undead, you are given a bow to shoot at ropes and chains to free people or smash things. As you smash things, like doors, you can enter rooms to gain new weapons or other goodies.

The downside to this game is there's very little to do other than kill, smash and collect. So, don't go into this game thinking you're going to get a very deep gaming experience. No, treat this game as it is, light gaming fare.


This is where this game gets its absolute lowest marks. The graphics look no better than a Wii game (and, in some cases) worse. Specifically, the environments look okay, but the characters look amazingly bad. The textures are low res, the movements are strange and the mouths might as well not move at all. The weapons work well enough, but there's just not much here to brag about with the graphics. If you want a much higher res gaming experience, then get Gears of War, Halo 2 or Modern Warfare. These are high quality games given the professional graphics touch. Hunted: The Demon's Forge is so poorly done graphically, I'm surprised Bethesda would even want to release this thing.


Even though one of the main voice overs is Lucy Lawless, this game doesn't benefit from her work here. The graphics rendering quality is so bad on the characters, even the voice overs don't help.


This game needs a lot more development time to polish the graphics. In fact, this game looks even worse than Two Worlds and Two Worlds II. Yes, it looks that bad. The game plays better than Two Worlds, though.

Again, this is another disappointing title from Bethesda. It's unusual for Bethesda Softworks to release such underwhelming titles as Brink and now Hunted: The Demon's Forge. However, if you like throwbacks to the 90's, you might enjoy this style of game (ignoring the poor quality graphics, of course). I'm personally not thrilled with AI based forced co-op play. So, this play style doesn't get high marks from me.

This is not a title you're going to play for a long time anyway. So, I'd recommend renting over buying this one. Stick with Redbox or Gamefly to find this game. Don't spend full price.

  • Sound: 6/10
  • Graphics: 3.5/10 (amazingly bad character graphics)
  • Gameplay: 7/10
  • Story: 6/10
  • Bugginess: N/A
  • Controls: 8.5/10
  • Bang-to-buck: 1/10
  • Play Value: $5 (rent this one)
  • Overall: 4/10 (too much of a throwback, game too straightforward, poor graphics)

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