In any world, magic can be a dangerous tool. And when one wields the wrong magic, catastrophe can ensue. In The Last Spell RPG by Ishtar Games, fights will have you thinking on your toes. One must become familiar with the turn-based combat of The Last Spell. And you’ll have to be quick to fight the chaos. But how does one combat ultimate destruction?
The title is available on Steam for $19.99.
The Last Spell RPG Story
It felt like the story for The Last Spell RPG was well-thought-out. And as if heavily inspired by LOTR, there was some fairly solid dark humor. With a mad king as part of the story, I knew exactly what direction the story was going. And in turn-based combat games like The Last Spell, gallows humor makes the rest of the story easier to handle. Why not have some laughs about the wanton destruction?
Archmage Heronymous Teller, in the hopes of ending all conflict, took it upon himself to ‘help.’ I had a bit of a chuckle thinking, “Great. Another mage who thinks he has the solution.” To no one’s great surprise, a King exacted revenge with a similar spell. And it inadvertently summoned twisted monsters.
Despite the destruction in The Last Spell RPG story, I was pleased with the simplicity. The story is fairly easy to follow. While certainly dark in its themes, it’s a sad sort of funny. In spectacular fashion, the once-hated mages had to be protected while they cast the final spell.
At its heart, The Last Spell RPG plays like a tower defense game. But the gameplay reminds me so much of Final Fantasy Tactics. Using a day and night cycle, the turn-based combat of The Last Spell can be difficult. My first go-around was far from easy. Despite having played similar games, it did not help me plan for this title. But that wasn’t a totally bad thing. It was refreshing to have a little more difficulty than I expected since it kept me on my toes.
Movements are governed by action points. And it is of great importance to keep an eye on them. Once they’re expended, no character can move. And mana is severely limited. In The Last Spell RPG, mana can only be regenerated during the Day cycle. And during the night cycle, you are limited to what mana you start with. Also, be aware that certain actions/attacks can only be executed in certain directions. This proved to be frustrating in the middle of battle. When a character managed to get to a specific square, it often spelled their certain doom. I could do nothing as enemy after enemy hit that party member.
Reconstruction occurs during the production phase. You can assign workers to build mana or health pools. And they can also be assigned to harvest gold or construction materials from ruins. As in-depth as this was, it gets frustrating if you don’t do everything possible. Make sure tasks are all finished before you end this phase, as otherwise will cause numerous issues.
Sights and Sounds of a Doomed World
The pixelation did not take away from The Last Spell RPG. In fact, it added to the game’s all-around charm. With a computer that’s not so up-to-date, low-spec graphics made it very easy to play. And it allowed the action of the game to take center stage whenever there was conflict. Using a darker color palette, the environment conveyed the hopelessness of the story. And despite being low-spec and having darker tones, there was still a wonderful vibrance of color. Character models were very simple. They were reminiscent of games like Final Fantasy 1-3.
Musically, The Last Spell RPG exuded an arcade feel. While certainly carrying an arcade tone, the music was not composed using MIDI files. Battles carried their own unique sound. The music that played carried a sense of urgency and imminent danger. And, of course, during the production phase, it was nice to have a tone that was more relaxed. It helped curb the anxiety induced by fighting the undead. Except for speech, each character would make noises when struck.
The Last Spell RPG was definitely an interesting ride. Attacks were easy to understand, but certain things prevented attacks from happening. There was no shortage of frustration when attacks didn’t immediately kill enemies. But it took my party dying to realize that death was not the end. And while it could be bothersome, the ‘renewal’ cycle was nice. It allowed me to ‘purchase’ skills that I hadn’t seen before. But it’s a little odd that this wasn’t presented to the player right away. I probably wouldn’t have restarted if I had known this. So take note that if your party falls in battle, there is still a chance to save what’s left of humanity. As it stands, the game is still in the Early Access stages. Many elements are still in development. So be sure to take that into account when purchasing.