GDC 2010: Hands-On Preview: Tournament of Legends - NewsVGChartz Staff , posted on 12 March 2010 / 3,151 Views
Last year at E3, we saw a new Wii exclusive title from High Voltage Software called Gladiator A.D. At GDC, we met up with High Voltage again and they showed us a nearly complete build of the game, now titled Tournament of Legends. However, the name is not the only thing that has changed. For instance, the game used to have this gritty, drab, colosseum feel to it, but High Voltage has decided to use a more colorful, toned-down setting (see the comparison below). This was probably a good move considering the Wii does not do 'realistic' very well. It also gave the developers a lot more room to work with because they were not locked into the 300 or Gladiator world.
The game's characters and arenas are very much inspired by mythological creatures and settings. At the character selection screen, you can choose one of eight different fighters, a weapon, and then an enchantment. There is a lot of variety in the fighters when it comes to weight, range, speed, and more. Some of the character's you will see are a big burly gladiator, a minotaur, a gorgon, stone golem, and a beautiful Valkyrie. Each character has their own story and their own motivation for fighting.
Tournament of Legends is an arena fighter that uses an over-the-shoulder camera view. Depending on the momentum of the fight, your character may be in the foreground facing away from you or the background facing towards you. Both angles work perfectly fine and it really adds a sense of depth to the game that would not exist otherwise.
The first time you turn on the game, every fighter will have only one weapon and one enchantment to choose from. However, once that fighter defeats others, he gains their enchantment and weapon to use as his own. So, the more you fight with a specific character, the more customization you have.
The game supports motion controls (but not MotionPlus), button controls (and the classic controller), or a combination of the two. Your main attacks are a swing of the remote from side to side or up and down. Your secondary weapon is controlled with your nunchuck. If you hold B while attacking, you will pull off a slower, but more powerful and unblockable attack. You can throw projectiles with C and block with Z, as well. If these controls don't suit you, you can re-map almost all of them.
The weapons are pretty straight forward, so I won't go into too much detail there. But I bet you are wondering about enchantments. These are essentially buffs you can place on yourself during the fight that will make you stronger. For example, my character had a shock enchantment. During the battle, press the minus button on the Wii controller to activate it. Now if I hit my enemy, he will have a shock debuff on him some a couple seconds. Enchantments use up your energy bar though, so you have to use them sparingly.
The fights really don't get boring. Armor can fly off during battle (which you have the chance to repair in between rounds), and every stage has a unique monster you will need to avoid from time to time (if they choose to appear). If these arena-specific monster appears, you need to quickly following the on-screen instructions to escape unscathed (usually a swift swipe of the Wii remote and nunchuck will do the trick). It really is a nice feature that keeps everything fresh and interesting.
Even though the developers beat my ass in the game, it was fun. I definitely had a good time. If you are looking for crisp graphics in the game, you shouldn't be. That is not what Tournament of Legends is all about. The game is pretty, but it isn't HD pretty. It is a unique fighter with a twist for Wii. The game is looking to launch around June this year, so make sure to keep your eyes peeled for it this summer.