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Hoard review

Kat Orphanides
9 May 2011
Hoard
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
7
inc VAT

A fun ten minutes' gaming in multiplayer mode, but a lack of variety and dull single-player game means it's not particularly engrossing

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If you've ever wanted to incinerate villages, capture fair maidens and use knights as convenient pre-packaged snack products, Hoard is the game for you. In this casual RTS you control a mighty fire-breathing dragon with only one thing on its mind: gold.

You start penniless, but money is easily acquired by razing neighbouring towns, fields and traders' wagons to the ground. As the towns and castles around you grow, they'll start to defend themselves but will also generate royal carriages, which can be destroyed to reveal a princess. If you take her to your lair and fend off the knights that try to rescue her, she'll be ransomed for a hefty bounty. Other challenges include rampaging giants and magical towers capable of blasting you out of the sky. Both are hard to defeat but produce epic quantities of treasure.

Hoard

Fortunately, no matter how tough the opposition, you don't die and can always return to your lair to heal. Gather enough gold and you'll go up a level, allowing you to increase the amount of treasure you can carry, your flight speed, the effectiveness of your attacks and your defensive abilities. You'll also find power-ups to temporarily give you ice breath, more powerful flames or even the ability to steal from other dragons' hoards.

Most games last just ten minutes. You can play by yourself or with up to three friends in multiplayer co-op or competitive modes. We're very grateful for the multiplayer options, as playing alone soon becomes tedious, even with a computer-controlled opponent or ally. There are two competitive modes and one co-operative option. In co-op games, you and your fellow dragons must work together to bring gold, gems and kidnapped princesses back to a shared hoard - the winner is whoever hauls back the most loot. In the competitive modes you each have a hoard, which you must grow and defend as you strive to get more gold or princesses than your rivals. The final game mode, HOARD, is a teeth-grindingly difficult single-player time challenge in which you're set upon by scores of enemies with no opportunity to heal yourself.

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