Coming from Stormseeker Games, Infinite Adventures is described by the developers as a “dungeon crawling RPG inspired by classic dungeon RPGs; with fresh new mechanics, combat and progression”. Promising procedurally generated levels to explore, and a host of monsters and bosses to take down, how does this game compare to those that inspired it? I gathered my party and set out.
The story of Infinite Adventures is fairly simple. You are The Traveller, a mysterious person who was found on the doorstep of the Infinite Labyrinth, a construct that just appeared in the land one day. People who go into the Infinite Labyrinth have an unfortunate habit of not coming back, so obviously finding someone who has survived piques the interest of the land’s rulers. Having recovered, you are sent back into the Labyrinth with a party of adventurers, who you get to choose, in the hopes of jogging your memory. With the bad guys that you meet reacting to your character as if they know them, what secrets lurk in the many levels?
The graphical style on display is firmly on the Anime end of the scale; all big eyes and ladies who can’t quite constrain their ample *ahem* assets. Either that or cloth is very expensive in this world, so they can’t quite make their outfits big enough. Anyway, once I’d finished admiring the beautiful art style, it was time to create a character. In this game, the character we control is known only as The Traveller, and in a well worn RPG cliche, we’ve lost our memory. So, what do we look like? Well, the character generator is pretty strong, with a total of five races to choose from, male or female, and a choice of 10 classes as well. Having gone through and chosen just the right hair colour and ear shape (yes really) and a back story about our birth, one thing that impressed me was a questionnaire at the end of the process. By answering these questions, Infinite Adventures decides which of the summon characters will aid you in battle. I initially ended up with the avatar of Justice, and so can summon a Holy element attack in battle which hits all enemies.
The meat of the action is in the dungeon crawling, and in this the adventures don’t disappoint. You start of on level one of the dungeon, and the only part of the map that can be viewed is the part that you’ve trodden on. As you explore, both the mini and large level maps both fill out, letting you see the scope of the levels. The view is classic dungeon crawling, with an ability to go forward, backwards, to turn left or right and interact with doors. So basically, you’re left to explore away! As you wander, there is a circle surrounding the map that changes colour as you get closer to an enemy encounter, and when it is orange a few more steps will see you in a fight.
As you explore the deeper reaches, you’ll see odd distortions in the air as you wander too. These are known as Yokai, stronger creatures that you can take on that usually guard the way to some high level treasure or block the path that you need to take. Bosses look the same, but their distortions are coloured red to let you know that it might be a good idea to save your game… or at least make sure the party is healed. Having run into a random or planned encounter though, it’s time to fight!
This is where the second half of the Infinite Adventures takes place; a classic turn based scrap-a-thon! Choosing to attack or defend, use skills or magic, items or even to flee from combat, this is proper old school RPG fodder. The graphics in the fight screens are largely static though, with just each participant jumping slightly as they attack, but this doesn’t take away from the purity of the game on display here.
Certain enemies are weak to specific elements, and resist others, so learning what works will stand you in good stead, and with other parameters to manage like Rage, that allows certain classes to use their abilities, the depth on display is very impressive. In addition, landing hits, and being hit, in turn fills the Kessen bar, different levels of which allow you to use powerful Kessen attacks, such as all characters attacking with their ranged weapons, or the front row using their melee weapons to hit a random enemy, in addition to their regular attack. For example, the summon attack I have uses four bars of the Kessen meter, and so is best saved for the stronger creature or boss encounters.
There really is no holds barred in this game though, and if you don’t keep your team healed up, either with magic or saves, a sudden and catastrophic collapse of the party is all too possible. I quickly learned that if the situation looks even vaguely dicey, saving is the correct response. Also, as a pro tip, make sure you always have a good supply of Vergence Crystals, as these allow you to teleport out of the Labyrinth back to town. Without them, it’s a long walk out and with a possibly weakened team, and certainly not one you’re likely to survive. Yes, I’m speaking from experience!
So far so good then and Infinite Adventures is a classic style game, with classic style difficulty. There are a whole multitude of NPCs to interact, all of which are fully voice acted and can offer side missions and quests to help you level up. There are people to teach new skills and Kessens, and you can swap the party around if you feel the need (maybe more healers will help you get through that tough section of dungeon?). With an involving main quest to follow in addition to bounty boards and side missions, there is no shortage of things to keep you busy.
And with all that said, it’s good to see that Infinite Adventures does enough to distinguish itself from other RPGs on the Xbox One, as it isn’t quite like anything I’ve played before on this platform. While the graphics are largely static, and the voice acting quite often veers over to the cheesy side, there is personality in the character portraits, and the sight of a team of largely dead people does soon start to make you care about your team’s fate.
All in all, Stormseeker Games have done a good job with Infinite Adventures, and if you are in the mood for a pure old school hit of difficulty then you could do a lot worse.