Army Corps of Hell captures the devilish combat of its setting but is too repetitive to sustain that appeal.
- Bloody and satisfying combat
- Intense boss fights
- Entertaining cooperative play.
- Severe lack of diversity
- Aiming doesn't always work properly
- Frustrating punishment for dying.
Minions are a perk even a damned soul can relish. In Army Corps of Hell, you conquer the afterworld by controlling a horde of pint-size killers that happily do your evil bidding. Fountains of gore erupt from the dismembered demons that fall to your wrath, and this unrelenting bloodshed serves as the barbaric draw pushing you from one horrifying encounter to the next. But even unbridled bouts of brutality can grow tiresome after a while. As you stoically march from one arena to the next, viciously exterminating everything that stands before you, repetition drains the enjoyment as quickly as the pools of blood grow around you. There's undeniable satisfaction in the core action in Army Corps of Hell, but these ideas never blossom into something truly engaging.
You might think that the King of Hell would be an unopposed monarch in the realm of the perpetually punished. Not so in Army Corps. The Almighty defeated this noble demon, and you must right the wrongs done to you as you slowly rise to prominence once more. Between every stage are story sequences that map your progress. A harsh, guttural language born where fire and brimstone rule the landscape certainly sets a tone of morbidity, but the actual plot is slow to develop and tedious to follow. The lack of full animation in the many cutscenes is part of the reason, and the predictable dialogue does little to invest you in these infernal affairs.
As the King of Hell, you command an army of goblins eager to do your bidding. Levels are separated into confined arenas populated by angry beasts, and you unleash your army to kill them all, opening up a passage to the next area. Up to 100 goblins surround your character as you move across the battlefield, and they are broken up into three distinct classes that excel depending on the situation.
Soldiers are the most adept at close-quarters combat because they have both the raw strength and the defensive protection to slay most any beast that comes your way. Spearmen also thrive in melee duels, but they are used slightly differently. You send your entire troop across the arena at once. Watching dozens of these angry goblins sprint to slay a hovering eyeball is a majestic scene, though losing your protectors leaves you open to punishment from nearby beasts. Finally, the magi attack with long-range magical strikes, though they aren't nearly as powerful as the other two groups.
Combat involves switching between these three groups as you skillfully circle around the arenas. Elemental traps make walking blindly a deadly affair, so you have to move with precision if you want to avoid your opponents' strikes while landing retaliatory blows of your own. When your goblins are attacked they fall stunned to the ground, and you can revive them simply by walking over their prone bodies. If they stay on the ground too long, they eventually perish, and you need to purchase new goblins at special chambers to grow your army once more.
There is some strategy in advancing. Certain enemies are covered with flames or electrical currents, so you must use your magi while keeping your distance. Other enemies are vulnerable only from the back. A snake that erupts from the ground swallows your goblin army whole if you let him. Quickly dashing behind it and then sending your soldiers to pick away at its weak point is the quickest way to slay it. Other times, you may need to send your spearmen to fight an enemy from afar while you keep your soldiers nearby to fight another monster. Because a variety of enemies and traps litter each arena, you have to stay focused to survive. There's an undeniable thrill in conquering the tougher areas through skillful use of your goblin army. Furthermore, watching the bloody geyser that erupts from fallen foes is morbidly satisfying.
This game could be accomplished on PSP ! the graphics are old and there are so many lack of details, the concept of story and art is great but gameplay gets too much repetitive due to keep seeing all the same objects over and over again ... i dun recommend buying this game ....
Does this remind anyone else of the South Park episode where Kenny gets a PSP and plays Heaven vs Hell?! Because... dang.
got it for free from best buy, still waiting for the show and little big planet. its a cool game, maybe not 40 bucks cool, but fun nonetheless. I prefer this over rayman any day.
Does the box art and name seem a little deceptive for a slasher JRPG? When I see "Army Corps of Hell", I think like a tactical 3rd person shooter.
Almost got this for free if Best Buy had another game in stock that I wanted to buy. I'll consider it in the future.