Sword Legacy: Omen is a new indie turn-based tactical role playing game from developer Team 17. Set in the Arthurian legend era, the game uses many of the standard tropes associated with the story. Take on the role of King Arthur’s father Uther Pendragon as he returns to Mercia Castle, with Merlin in tow, only to find it soon conquered by the Wessex. The invading Duke of Gorlois kills the current king and takes his daughter Lady Igraine hostage. Uther vows to get revenge and save his love, the princess.
Sword Legacy: Omen’s graphics are good and character animation reminded me of the fantasy cartoons I grew up, such as The Last Unicorn, only much prettier. They have a quality similar to hand drawn 1980s cartoons but updated and polished. This is combined with standard pixel based environments and levels. It creates an interesting experience and I was surprised to find it worked so well combining them.
The lack of any voice acting beyond the narrator does make the game feel a little more simple and the addition of voicework from the various characters would have added more depth to the characters. Music itself is rather subpar and repetitive, especially in combat. As you progress the same songs will repeat over and over with the various combat scenes.
Gameplay in Sword Legacy: Omen consists of the standard turn based scheme during combat. Players choose actions for each team member and then end their turn. The opponent AI will then take its turn and move its respective characters. Your party will consist of four maximum heroes. There are eight different types; Knight, Lancer, Priest, Barbarian, Keeper, Blacksmith, Sorcerer, and of course the lowly thief. Each of these classes has different skills and the key is to utilize them for the various combat scenarios. Instead of the usual experience gain from combat, characters will earn “renown” that can be used to unlock various skills.
Your team members are never actually killed, only injured. Unfortunately they never recover their hit point unless you camp or pay to rest at an inn. This was a bit frustrating as the inn is rather pricey. This leaves a heavy burden on your Priest to keep your hit points up and the cooldown on heal is rather long. The nice thing is that turns are based on your whole team, so you can choose to heal first. As with any turn-based RPG strategy is key to winning battles. Be sure to use any objects on the field to give you an edge, like exploding barrels and fall offs.
Sword Legacy: Omen is a fine game. If you like the genre then it should be up your alley. If you like the genre AND Arthurian legends then this is definitely the game for you. I don’t like this style of game typically but I love Arthurian stuff so I found the story engaging and intriguing. Unfortunately the dialog went on a bit too much. It made the game feel slow and my mind drifted off during the long, and sometimes pointless cut scenes. The story itself was good but the actual conversations between characters just went on too long and veered into cheesiness on occasion, with no ability to move or manipulate your character in any way during the discussions. There are tons of Lore items that you can pick up and they all give interesting background and add to immersion if you are a fan like me.
If you don’t like tactical role playing games then Sword Legacy: Omen won’t convert you. But if you already like them, it’s an enjoyable game with good, if long winded, storytelling. Combat has some unique aspects, the graphics are interesting and well done, and a lot of attention was put in into utilizing the Arthurian legend. Overall though, Sword Legacy: Omen is just a fine fantasy game that got pretty boring after a time.
Sword Legacy: Omen is available now for PC via Steam. This review is based on a copy provided by the publisher.