Review: Warhammer 40,000 – Legacy of Dorn – Herald of Oblivion (iOS)

Review: Warhammer 40,000 – Legacy of Dorn – Herald of Oblivion (iOS)
Review Score:

Until recently, developer Tin Man Games was best known for their efforts in bringing the Fighting Fantasy series – a largely popular series of role-playing books co-published by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone during the early to late 1980s – on various Android and iOS devices.

Like the books they represented, the gameplay was rather straight-forward — you would read through the story; roll dice during enemy encounters (like traditional Dungeons & Dragons); and made decisions that would change the outcome of the story (while making notes of the items you found along the way).

Warhammer 40,000: Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion steps outside this tradition in many ways. While the game still provides a ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ book to read, it forgoes all the dice rolling and stats from previous books by replacing them with a HUD (Heads Up Display) with the ability to interact with the environment while in combat (more on this in a moment).

Warhammer 40,000 Legacy of Dorn Herald of Oblivion As far as stories are concerned, Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion has one of the best ever written. It doesn’t take long for the game to thrust the player into the role of Brother Nabor; a hardened Space Marine that has undergone decades of military training. A member of the Imperial Fists Chapter, Nabor and his fellow squadron – commanded by Sergeant Valerius – embark on a mission to cleanse the derelict from the xenon threat. As you might expect, things go awry the moment the squad uses an ancient teleporter to reach their destination.

From there, the adventure is saturated in Warhammer lore, terminology and references. But most importantly, the story focuses on the player’s survival as they search for their missing squadron aboard the derelict. Using the choices given, the player can decide to scan the environment for life signs, investigate the surroundings, or carry on with the mission at hand.

During combat, the game switches to a HUD (Head Over Display) seen from the third-person. The battlefield is represented by a green 3D grid, and the enemies appear in formation as dark, green images (reminiscent of night vision technology). The player can perform a number of different actions during combat, including the ability to move (in a limited fashion) by using the arrows located at the bottom of the screen. When an enemy is defeated, the player must press the available movement buttons — which are Advance and Withdraw — to approach the remaining enemies on the battlefield.

Warhammer 40,000 Legacy of Dorn Herald of Oblivion An inventory window that contains Nabor’s weapons is located in the bottom left-hand corner of the screen. To change weapons, the player can swipe their finger left or right over the window to toggle between long-range and melee-based weapons.

Since combat is turn-based, the player must carefully plan their attacks accordingly. The game provides a ‘focus’ skill that can help improve Nobar’s attack accuracy during combat, but it can also reduce the enemy’s chance of landing a blow. The ”attack’ function is pretty basic; its functionality varies based on the weapon currently equipped.

The Honour Meter helps Nabor perform better during combat. Once the meter contains enough honour, the player can unleash a devastating attack that can (on occasion) eliminate enemies in a single blow. It’s worth mentioning that the amount of damage this attack inflicts will vary depending on the weapon the player has equipped.

Aside from the combat system, Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion functions like all of Tin Man Games’ previous adventure books. There are bookmarks to save your game; an inventory system to keep track of the items found during the adventure; and three difficulty settings that accommodate gamers of all skills levels.

Warhammer 40,000: Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion for iOS offers a refreshing twist to the long-standing series of Adventure Books developed by Tin Man Games. Hopefully, going forward — the developer will use a variation of the provided combat system in future Adventure Books. It was fun to have some control over my character and his weapons; it added some depth to an already near-perfect game.

Mike Pittaro
Platform: iOS (Also Available on Android Devices)
Developer: Tin Man Games
Publisher: Tin Man Games

Rated 9+ for the following:
• Infrequent/Mild Horror/Fear Themes
• Infrequent/Mild Cartoon or Fantasy Violence
Compatibility: Requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

Price: $5.99

Warhammer 40,000: Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion Official Website

Review Score
The graphics still manage to impress despite the monochrome color palette.
Impressive sound effects and music.
The 3D combat system adds a new dimension to the gameplay
Warhammer 40,000: Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion for iOS offers a refreshing twist to the long-standing series of adventure books developed by Tin Man Games.
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