Remember a little game called Diablo
is like that, only more so. In one-upping Blizzardís classic, Nox
succeeds wildly in some areas... and fails in others. Overall, though, itís a damn fun game.
Youíre Jack, or -insert your name here-, called to a strange new world by an orb sitting on top of your television and thrown into a quest to save the world from the evil clutches of the Necromancer(ess?) Hecubah. At the beginning of the game, you pick a class, be it Warrior with brute strength and not much else, Wizard with much magic but weak combat ability, or Conjuror with the ability to fight and to charm and summon beasts. Each class has its benefits and detriments, and which you pick really depends on your style. Much like in Diablo, new players should pick Warriors until they get the game down, and then branch out into the other classes.
One of the coolest things about Nox is the fact that the game is different depending on which class you pick. You start in different locations, and although you end up traversing the same land to stop Hecubah, the things you do are different. Itís really cool to be playing single-player and revisit areas you did with a previous character as a previous class. The single-player game itself is damn fun, with a variety of quests, gorgeous maps, and fun gameplay.
One of the main draws of Nox is its multiplayer capabilities, and itís definitely a great multiplayer game. Here is where it most diverges from its Diablo-esque past. Noxís multiplayer reminds me more of a tight game of Unreal Tournament than it does the rather languid play of Diablo on battle.net. Westwood Online offers servers galore, with different types of play modes, once you sign up for the free service. Thereís old-school Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, Last Man Standing, and others to keep you interested. Inevitably, being an old CTF maven, I find myself playing that and having a blast. Each serverís flag in Nox is different-colored depending on what its ping is, giving you a great indication of how good the game will be when you get there. Either game mode does have its issues, however. The controls are somewhat clumsy until you get used to them, and pushing items using only the mouse gets to be a real hassle at times, as itís hard to do with precision. Luckily, the fun of the game more than makes up for these little problems.