E3 2016: Loot Rascals Hands On Impressions

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The first thing that stood out to me about Loot Rascals was the game’s retro sci-fi cartoon art. Inspired by 1960’s Hanna-Barbera style animation like The Jetsons, it is hard not to praise the art style for Loot Rascals. I found myself looking at the details for the characters and world as every animation appeared carefully thought out. The world is colored to the smallest detail even the sweat dripping down the side of the main character’s face is eye catching. The details in the visual design all combine together to make for one of the most charming titles I saw at E3 2016.

Loot Rascals E3

But that is how the game looks and what is really important is how it plays. Loot Rascals is a roguelike strategy game with card collecting mechanics. Player’s movements are dictated by a step counter and the world is procedurally generated around our hero. Players must traverse the planet from their home base and discover items (cards) to survive. The combat is done automatically for the players therefore leaving the players the challenge of building their characters abilities and powers via randomly generated and dropped cards.

Cards can be found throughout the world either by themselves or from fallen creatures. These cards can boost your strength/HP or give your character more options for fighting off foes. The amount of cards the player can have active is limited, but some cards can be combined and stacked leading for various options and loadouts for the main character.

In an interesting twist players can lose a card if they fall to a monster and that card is usually the strongest card in the player’s deck. This monster will then be uploaded up to an online server and dropped into another player’s game. If another player defeats the monster they can keep the card or send the card back to its original owner out of the kindness of their heart.

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If the card is sent back to the owner, a hologram of that player will pop up in your game to assist you or if you keep the card that hologram will possibly harm you. This element is probably the most fascinating thing I took away from the demo though for obvious reasons it was something I could not experience from the showfloor.

Other things of note from the demo is the day/night cycle that is dictated by a step counter in the right corner of the screen. This aspect is important because a majority of the monsters and enemies I crossed paths with were either stronger or weaker based on the time of day. When I came across a couple of monsters that were too tough during the day I could find a path around them or find a way to kill time. Once the time of day was to my liking I could easily go in for the kill and grab any dropped cards.

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Again combat was automatic and the card collecting was the key to success with the randomness of the card drops being the hook. I’d be interested in seeing more from the game in terms of a story since the demo I played focused on combat and exploration and I really want to see if the game does anything fun with its art style.

The world of Loot Rascals is simply gorgeous and the card collecting element with its online capabilities can make for an interesting and fun experience.

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