Sacred 3 (Video Game Review)

Deep Silver has released the hack-n-slash title, Sacred 3, for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. Sacred 3 features drop-in and out co-op multiplayer that allows up to two players to join in the fun offline and up to four player for epic online play. Every character class in Sacred 3 features a set of unique talents and weapons which can slowly be upgraded for a better gameplay experience and to match the gamer's exact playstyle. The overall story involves players battling out against various hordes of enemies in a quest to be the biggest hero of all which includes extensive mission stats and the ability to check your progress against that of other players via online leaderboards. Are you ready to start an epic adventure? Then read on.

Sacred 3
starts out with a taste of its enhanced visuals and beautifully intricate characters before the game even starts with its action-packed opening sequence. The main menu is where your adventure begins with the options to change your display, audio, and controller settings alongside the ability to view the help menu before you start. Other great options available at the start are the "Gallery" and the ability to get new content via "Downloadable Content." The Gallery consists of various trailers and briefings that will help you understand the story better with more content being unlocked throughout your adventures in Sacred 3. Once you have checked out everything the menu has to offer then it is ready to get the party started by simply clicking "Start Game."

Before you can begin your epic missions with the world of Sacred 3, you must pick your hero via the "Character Creation" screen. Each character comes with their own unique abilities, culture, combat skills and background story. The four characters available from the beginning of the game are Marak the Safiri Warrior, Vajra the Khukuri Archer, Claire the Seraphim Paladin, and Alithea the Ancarian Lancer. It was really enjoyable to read all of the details that went into each story, and it greatly helps you understand the unique personality of each character. The fact that the development team went through the extra effort of making each character background story adds a great deal of realism to the game and makes you feel like each character is their own person.

The three difficulties for Sacred 3 are Warrior, Champion and Legend which can be changed at any time during the Session Settings menu in the lobby. The first mission occurs in Halios where you must push back the mercenary intruders and save the people they have enslaved. Gamers will need to complete the first mission before they are allowed to play online with other players in order to gain experience and learn how the game works. You will be guided by the telepath Aria who is inexperienced and doesn't know where she is half the time which adds a great deal of humor to the overall storyline. The main plot for Sacred 3 centers around the Seraphim which are the guardians of the legendary Heart of Ancaria artifact and their extreme involvement with the people of the land has managed to keep the country at peace for many centuries. However, it isn't long before these mighty leaders are forgotten and Lord Zane who is the ruler of the Ashen Empire has stirred up a mighty chaos among the lands. Lord Zane has made fierce allies with the Demons and plans to break open the tightly sealed gates of the underworld to exact his revenge for past wrongs. A resistance was quickly formed and great Heroes from all over the lands have come together to stop his even plans and save the Heart of Ancaria. It all sounds so simple, but you heroes will meet their match as they go up against various creatures who all want their head on a stick.

Players who would like to get a taste of what Sacred 3 is all about can check out the prequel Sacred Citadel on XBLA, PSN and Steam. While many of the classes from Sacred 2: Fallen Angel have not returned for the new release--it is still an overall enjoyable title despite the fact it contains some shallow gameplay and packed full of corny humor. Sacred 3 features a top-down view of the game with all of your stats being displayed in the upper left corner of the game. Sacred 3 may not offer the exact same gameplay and options as previous releases, however, it does manage to offer a beautiful world full of bright colors with an immense amount of detail going into every environment. The controls in Sacred 3 are simple and responsive with gamers using the typical buttons to (A) Attack, (B) Block, (X) Mash (Y) Throw/Interact with [LB] and [RB] being used for combat arts aka special abilities. If you ever forget what button does what then you can press the start button on your controller to go to the Options menu to view your controller settings. However, combat in Sacred 3 is pretty simplistic and can be mastered within minutes of playing. Sacred 3 can contain some repetitiveness, but the game manages to spice things up with new abilities and loot as you progress.

Aria is a very helpful guide throughout your missions and will tell you exactly what you need to do alongside valuable information to keep your team alive. Players will come across various checkpoints throughout the game that are highlighted with huge rotating circles with symbols inside them. The area is a safe place to gather to resemble your team, develop strategies for your next battle and utilize any health items before progressing. Take advantage of these quiet moments before the chaos ensues again and you realize your health bar is at zero! The difficulty in Sacred 3 will rise as you get further into the game and those who survive on just pressing buttons will realize that they must finally develop a strategy for surviving. For example, some baddies will require special steps to defeat like enemies with shields require that you mash them first with (X) to lower their shield before you can attack. Get a bunch of these guys swarming you at one time and you got quite a battle on your hands! This is just example of many in Sacred 3 that manages to spice up gameplay while keeping the combat fresh and entertaining.

Sacred 3
features some fun dialogue and the storyline is entertaining enough for this type of hack-n-slasher. However, some of the characters feature some weak voice acting which was frankly lacking in enthusiasm for their type of character. Sacred 3 is packed full of humorous story writing, and at times it can brink on the edge of corny and weird, while other times it was quite funny and enjoyable. There is a unique balance in Sacred 3 that can make the game still remarkably addictive despite its many flaws. As you defeat some of the bigger bosses elite soldiers (like Karr Tel) then fallen spirits will be for hire and up to join your side which adds a great deal of kickassry to your battle plans for the future. A lot of Sacred 3 is one big pun, like the names of the character bosses, and of course all of the big bad asses hide behind their elite infantry before you are finally able to give them a good butt kicking. However, once you have battled your way to that big boss after he has mocked you battle after battle, then it is really satisfying to take them down and show them who is boss! Who is boss?! Because definitely wasn't me, I died ten times trying get to you...urgh. You get my point though. No matter how many times I was defeated, the amazing Spirit yelling "Sexy" to me on the battlefield gave me the strength to push forward.

The best part of Sacred 3 is its multiplayer options and the ability to take on the chaos with a friend. I believe that I would not have had as much fun as I did with the game if I would not have been able to play with others, because the old saying is true that everything is better with friends. Also, playing with a friend who can combine their talents and abilities with that of your own can make battling tough bosses that much easier. Even in the worst times of the game, if you have a friend with you, then you can almost laugh at anything even Sacred 3's corny jokes! In the end, Sacred 3 is a enjoyable game and offers up enough fun through its gameplay and multiplayer options to keep you entertained for hours on end. While Sacred 3 may suffer from a few lackluster plot holes, bad jokes and a tad bit of unenthusiastic voice-overs--the game is balanced out with its fun multiplayer, beautiful visuals and entertaining gameplay. If you are looking for an enjoyable title to play with friends, then look no further then Sacred 3. Sacred 3 is now available for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. Sacred 3 is rated Mature 17+ by the ESRB for blood, suggestive themes and violence. To learn more, visit the official Sacred 3 website.

Game Features:
  • Single Player (Offline 1-2) (Online 1-4)
  • Play As 1 of 5 Legendary Heroes with Malakhim Hero DLC
  • Master Special Attacks
  • Perform Powerful Co-op Combat Arts
  • Trophy/Achievement Support

Game Information:
Developer: Keen Games
Publisher: Deep Silver
Platforms: Xbox 360 (reviewed), PS3 & PC
Release Date: August 5, 2014
Score: 8 out of 10

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