Title: Citadel: Forged with Fire
Developer: Blue Isle Studios, Virtual Basement LLC
Publisher: Blue Isle Publishing
Genre: MMO, Sandbox RPG
Available For: Microsoft Windows, PS4, Xbox One
Tested On: PS4
Official Website: https://www.citadelthegame.com/
Release Date: November 1st, 2019
Where to Buy: PlayStation Store, Steam, Microsoft Store
While wands are a staple of most magic stories, the first thing that comes to mind is probably Harry Potter. Imagine if that entire universe never had a school like Hogwarts. There would likely be dozens of Apostates living in the wood surrounding cities and towns. Throw in the ability to choose your own adventure, and that’s what you get with Blue Isle’s Citadel: Forged with Fire.
I had always wondered what a strictly magic-user RPG would feel like. This game does an excellent job of providing people the freedom to go at it solo or join a coven. Many of the things you expect to do as a witch or warlock, such as gathering potion ingredients, is a big part of crafting. There are also the bloodthirsty forest creatures. But Harry Potter never had to fight the kinds of creatures you have to fend off here.
Citadel: Forged with Fire Gameplay
When the game first starts out, things are pretty straightforward. You have magically appeared in the world of Ignis, born of fire from an ancient magic cave. During the playthrough in a single-player world, players must choose one of two respawn points. Further respawn points are opened, provided the magic user explores the world of Citadel: Forged with Fire.
As a reborn witch/wizard of the wilds, you must forge your path throughout the expansive world. This first begins with crafting a few basic things. After sewing together some cloth for what looks like a nightgown, the first person I met in the world explained to me how to craft basic weapons and spells. The NPC was far more helpful than I’d care to admit, but once you finish your tasks with them, it’s up to you to hunt quests down.
In a similar fashion to Wild Terra, Blue Isle’s Citadel: Forged with Fire doesn’t hold your hand. You’re given a primary objective, but you have complete freedom to deviate from the story completely. Concentrate all your efforts into crafting your magic castle or focus on creating different potions with various effects. Or make a run at taming a handful of wild animals.
Taming The World’s Creatures
Taming wild creatures was one of my favorite parts of the game. The game suggests such in its description, but it doesn’t really delve into how the taming system works. While it is possible to tame multiple creatures, each witch or warlock is limited to a max of four friendly companion creatures. If you want to tame anything else, you’ll have to let go of what you already have. The act of taming them also requiring first weakening a target. Only then will your spell work faster.
While the taming was indeed an excellent feature in Citadel: Forged with Fire, it came with its share of problems. As your tamed animals follow, you can set them to different behaviors. I decided to go ahead and attack an Orc camp with my animals. The attack was a sure success, but it came at the cost of my animals. After taking out the Orcs, my animals went calm and marched in a line through the nearby bonfire and just died.
Before I even had a chance to change the behavior presets, all my creatures were dead. It is said that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. For my animals, those lines seemed to go right through the fire. I’ll admit I laughed for a good five minutes straight, but it was a bummer to see there wasn’t more to the creature AI for tamed animals.
Oh, The Magic!
The magic system wasn’t what I’d call the top of the line, but it was easy to get the hang of. Access to each set of spells is restricted by whether or not you have a certain essence. The default is ‘Arcane Essence, ‘ which gives you access to abilities like ‘Arcane Missile’ or ‘Harvest.’ If you want to tame an animal, you’d have to make ‘Nature Essence’ one of your spell ingredients and choose ‘Pacify.’
It took me some time to accept how the spells worked after creating them. Once I dropped my spells into a slot on either side of my weapon, that was it. I could only wield two spells at a time. I also noted that different weapons changed what magic appeared in my spellbook. The alchemical circle in it was also a nice touch.
Final Verdict: Citadel: Forged with Fire was a decent experience in being a forest witch. The world itself was expansive, making it possible to explore for hours. This definitely caters more to the Minecraft crowd, than hardcore fans of story-driven RPGs.
- Massive world to explore
- Flying on broomsticks
- Powerful magic spells
- Tamed animal AI is wonky
- Some may find armor crafting tedious
- Spells are restricted to two per weapon