Some veterans have flashbacks of Vietnam; I have flashbacks of Azurik. Months ago, after forcing myself to slog through that agonizingly dull action/adventure for a review, I promised myself "Never again," threw the game into a volcano, and wept. Then came New Legends, or as I like to call it, Azurik: The Legendary Chinese Journeys. The list of problems between the two games is so similar I began to question the existence of a god who would put me through this twice: Massive, sprawling levels that often leave you no idea where to go next; lackluster visuals, including crude backgrounds (complete with entire mountains suddenly popping in and out of view) and bland or non-existent effects; bugs and glitches (enemies appear and disappear, friendly characters jump happily off cliffs only to zoom back) that make you wonder who decided this game was finished; there's even a blue, pointy-eared hero! Nooooo! (Well, he's purple actually, but you get the idea). As with Azurik, I must begrudgingly admit NL isn't all bad: Combat is simple--block then attack--but sometimes fun in a Final Fight, mindless beat-'em-up kinda way. A huge cache of weapons you can equip in one or two hands and a couple decent bosses help as well. And friendly characters who chat and fight alongside you as the battle rages is a cool idea, if only they didn't behave like headless chickens. Never again--and this time, I mean it.
First of all, slapping an Asian face on any piece of crap will not keep it from stinking if it's a piece of crap to begin with. Sure, a few fancy martial-arts moves here, a dab of warring Asian clans there, and a scoop of overdramatized honor-upholding for good measure, and aw yeah, we're talkin' winning adventure-game formula, uh-huh! For the love of all that is holy, no! Non-existent enemy A.I. which puts fighting on the same entertainment level as cleaning toilets, shameful graphical glitches, a totally unintuitive inventory system, and a completely banal clunky storyline within a world you literally get lost in, nothing, let alone Asian cheese, is saving NL.
New Legends is an epic game. But like other grand-scale projects, say the movie Waterworld for example, it ends up spreading itself too thin for its own good. The sheer length, the tiring hack-and-slash battling, and the constant running remind me of a PC action game circa 1995. The sound quality (both the effects and the voice acting) could be better as well. Vet even with its obvious flaws, if NL succeeded in letting me sneak around and inflict covert damage (ala Metal Gear Solid 2) as it attempts to, I'd add a point to the score--but no such luck. The clunky camera and a main character with only two speeds (stand and run) won't allow it.
Download New Legends
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP