Welcome to ancient Greece! Please feel free to wander around and take in the sights; the lovely trees, for instance, including the larch.
We have mountains, rivers, villages, and all sorts of wonderful scenery. By the way, if you happen to run into any monsters, please feel free to kill them before they kill you.
Of course, with a name like Titan Quest, you may presume you will, at some point, have to fight some Titans. It takes some time and plenty of dispatching lesser monsters such as satyrs, harpies, and so on, but you will get there (or die trying).
This is a fairly standard adventure/kill-all-the-bad-guys game. The basic functional controls are standard: virtual joystick for movement on the left, big button on the right for attack/action. There are also a few small special action buttons on the right, but these skills get unlocked as you progress.
While you are running around the pastoral scenery the game takes your perspective into account and will render as translucent or transparent some of the solid objects in the game world so you can still see your hero. This doesn’t always work perfectly. I went into a cave in which most of the walls became semi-transparent, with the exception of a narrow section that prevented me from seeing myself. There were no real obstacles or enemies, so no danger, but it makes navigation a bit of a guessing game.
The background audio and sound effects are well done. The character dialogue helps to advance the story and provide the player with pointers regarding where to go and what needs to be done next. Even if you accomplish some of the goals out of order, the NPCs will still give their programmed prompts. If you think you are in over your head, you can try to run away. Some baddies will give up after a while, others won’t stop chasing you. One of the peskier, persistent hero chasers isn’t so much a bad guy as it is angry bacon (at least that’s how I’m thinking about them): wild boars. These pigs are no joke; early in the game they can do some serious damage to a lightly armored player.
Speaking of damaging the player, there is one glitch I came across. There were two instances where I had moved the hero around and was preparing to fight the bad guys when I started taking hits (the first is in the picture above). I tried to hit back but nothing happened, I tried to move, and still no dice. It seems if things go wrong in a very particular way, your hero freezes up and you are stuck waiting to die. But there is a way out; tap the inventory button in the upper left corner of the screen, then return to combat. Voilà, you can move and fight again. Another hazard while your character is in combat comes in the form of the pop-up game tip. These are mostly helpful, but the action doesn’t pause when the tips are displayed. At least the tips offer you the option to turn them off.
Like most games with a lot of territory to cover, the game lets you use portals to get from A to B quickly. They are only to get from region to region, so for shorter scale trips, you just have to run for a while. The inventory area is laid out in a grid pattern and only allows you to carry as much as will fit on the grid. You can double tap to swap out something in your inventory for what you are currently wearing. Be on the look-out for any level or statistics restrictions on items (if you are short on a stat, the text will be red). On the iPhone/iPod Touch screens, reading some of the stats becomes a bit of a squint fest.
While there are a couple issues and annoyances with this game, overall it plays well enough, has a decent back story, uses some very nice graphics and contains the classic “hero saves the day” elements. As noted, the small scale screens are a bit hard on the eyes, so this game may be better experienced on iPad formats. Even though there are some rough patches, the game still gets a B (I’m sure the programmers can fix the character freeze thing) because it’s still a fun game to play.