Joe Dever's Lone Wolf Review
- Attempts to shake up some of the more lacklustre elements of the gamebook genre.
- The animated art and orchestral score make for an immersive experience.
- The quick time events are a pain.
- Health is too easily lost, and checkpointing is harsh.
Though gamebook fans will appreciate the attempt to inject some life into the genre, Lone Wolf's ambitious but undercooked combat system proves more of an obstruction than an asset.
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Gamebooks may be a niche market, but it is amazing how many people have fond memories of them. Relying on people's nostalgia for the '80s has worked for many gamebook publishers, and now Joe Dever, author of the infamous Lone Wolf series has thrown his hat into the fray with a new four part saga. With the release of Steve Jackson's excellent Sorcery! earlier this year, however, Lone Wolf has its work cut out for it. It's an interesting take on the genre, but one which creates as many problems as it solves.
You start your adventure by picking your character's traits and abilities Every time there is a choice to be made in the story, a seal will appear, taking you to a separate page where three optins await you. Usually, one or two of these choices will be greyed out. The choices available will depend on which attributes you selected for your character. Do you approach problems with caution, or are you the kick-down-the-door type? Do you have psychic powers, or enhanced strength? All roads lead to Rome, as they say, and there is no wrong answer.
The character sheet is available at all times, allowing you to access your inventory, journal, and skills. These screens are cluttered and a little obtuse, so we spent as little time in menus as possible.
Beyond the storytelling and decision making, the actual meat of the game is the combat. Like Sorcery!, Lone Wolf does its best to make combat more interesting than rolling a few animated dice. Unlike Sorcery!, though, the Lone Wolf team has attempted to integrate a full 3D combat system into the game, featuring magic, melee, ranged, attacks. Potions are also available to you to heal your wounds or boost your stamina. Stamina recharges over time, but is also crucial for parrying and negating incoming attacks.
Most attacks are linked to a quick time event that either has you tapping in time to onscreen prompts, swiping in a particular direction, or mashing the screen to build up energy. While most of the systems work, these QTEs demand a lot of precision. As any fault will instantly negate your attack or defence, combat quickly becomes a pain. And, since combat how you spend most of your time outside of the narrative, the irritation you feel begins to sour the experience.
Those who love their gamebooks or enjoy a good fantasy yarn will likely be able to look past the combat issues, and will enjoy the story on its own terms. Everyone else will probably find the annoying quick time event a deal breaker.
Description50% off Season Pass: Get episodes 2, 3 and 4 at best price
"Half gamebook and half action RPG, Joe Dever's Lone Wolf is one adventure that fans of either genre will enjoy from start to finish"
– PocketGamer.co.uk - 9/10
"A fascinating experiment, occasionally a beautiful little piece of art, and I really ended up enjoying both the combat system and the character building in the long run."
– TouchArcade - 4/5
"Highly exceptional and unique in ways that would only be discovered by experiencing it first-hand."
– 148apps - 4/5
"An amazing overall interactive gamebook experience."
- Capsule Computers - 9,5/10
Develop awards 2014 – Finalist in "Use of a license or IP"
IndieCade 2014 - Digital Selection
Italian Games Awards 2014 - "Best Italian Indie Game" & "Best Italian Game Design"
ACT 4 – Dawn over V’taag now available!
“The dark tower of V’taag looms above you. Like an accusing finger, this monstrous edifice of granite and black iron pierces the sky, drawing bolts of lightning from the roiling clouds above.”
Your epic adventure comes to an end! Storm the fortress of V’taag and thwart the evil plans of the Darklords of Helgedad, once and for all. All mysteries shall be unveiled and the greatest battles shall be fought in the final act of the acclaimed Joe Dever’s Lone Wolf saga.
Are you ready to write your own destiny?
Joe Dever's Lone Wolf has evolved and improved dramatically since the release of Act 1. If you only explored Rockstarn or the Sunken Forest, be sure to get back to the Magnamund and enjoy all the new features! The defensive stance for dual wielders, the tactical pause, the fine tuning of all attacks and Kai disciplines… Here at Forge Reply we have been listening closely to your feedback. Come and see for yourself!
Season Pass: Get episodes 2, 3 and 4 at best price. Do your part and fight for Sommerlund and the Kai Order!
THE VIDEO GAME WHERE YOU ARE THE HERO
Lone Wolf is back, as a video game series with a brand-new story, a new combat system, stunning graphics and much more! Make meaningful choices and carve your own path through this epic non-linear story. Test your strength with the dynamic turn-based combat system, prove your skill with the lock-picking minigame and accept the challenge of wits posed by the mysterious Shianti Cube!
The author Joe Dever has been working with the studio, involving himself in the story writing so it fits with the original continuity, while also shedding a new light on the fabled world of Magnamund.
For Sommerlund and the Kai!
- A brand-new adventure written by Joe Dever, now complete with all its four Acts!
- Create your character and try out different combinations of Kai Disciplines, traits and gear
- Write your own story through multiple choices
- A real combat system, where your prowess really counts –no random number table or dice to throw!
- 3 different difficulty levels to make the fighting experience more accessible -or more challenging!
- The new tactical pause system, that freezes time when you are choosing your next move. Unleash the tactician in you! (only on Easy and Medium difficulty)
- Lockpicking and puzzle mechanics to add an extra layer of skill and strategy
- Cloud saving features
- Fully translated into English, French, German, Italian and Spanish
IMPORTANT: Please restart your device after installing the application to improve game stability and performance!
LONE WOLF TM&© Joe Dever 1984-2014 JOE DEVER’s LONE WOLF©2014 Lic. Atlantyca S.p.A. JOE DEVER’s LONE WOLF videogame ©2014 Forge Reply, Atlantyca & Joe Dever All rights reserved. Published by BulkyPix
What's New in Version 4.2- Added missing illustration on the Act 4 in French and German.
- Text improvements in English and Italian.
- Better potions are now dropped in Act 3 and 4.
- The Gourgaz’ earthquake no longer stuns the player.
- Doomwolves summon has now a longer cooldown.
- Weapons durability has been increased.
- Stability improvements and generic bug fixing.