All Features


  PlayStation 3
  PlayStation 4
  Wii U
  Xbox 360
  Xbox One


Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising

Score: 80%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: Southpeak Interactive
Media: Download/1
Players: Massively Multiplayer
Genre: MMORPG/ Action/ Adventure

Graphics & Sound:

Ut desint vires,
tamen est laudanda voluntas

Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising is a refreshing twist on the fantasy MMORPG genre; while there are mythical creatures and magic, the game is generally based on ancient Rome. From the clothing to the architecture, the Roman empire is brought to life in Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising. Per the story, your estate has been destroyed by a mysterious cult (which is the evil force you must work to eliminate from Rome). This is a nice touch, as you not only get to observe a Roman estate, but you also get to see it built up from the ground, complete with the bracing forms and scaffolding. Not only that, but the exclamations that enemies say upon seeing you and when they die are in Latin, as are the names of all of your items. You have to be very, very careful while playing this game, or you might learn something...

As for the appearance, however, I should point out that the graphics aren't quite as highly detailed as some other MMORPGs I've played recently, and that there are some strange minor glitches, as well. However, one graphical glitch that occurred fairly frequently and to some comical effect was when I performed a grapple attack and the two character models (my avatar and my opponent's model) didn't align properly. When this happens, sometimes my character will jump up and wrap her arms and legs around... well, nothing... a few feet off and to the left of her opponent, then floats around as her opponent staggers around. Or, at times, she will execute a wrestling slam where she grabs as if she was grabbing her opponent, then falls, empty-handed to the ground, as her opponent, a short distance away, falls to the ground in concert and takes damage. Even when the grapples don't look right, though, they still work well... and I can't think of another MMORPG I've played that featured grapples, so maybe it's not the easiest thing to pull off.

The music in Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising has a Roman / Greek feel to it, some of which makes me want to either go to a Greek restaurant or a Renaissance fair, and, either way, I'm hungry. I mentioned the fun Latin voicework above, but the sound effects are well done, too, from the sounds of the footfalls on different surfaces, to the echo effect when in a cave; everything sounds like it should.


Facilius est multa facere quam diu

Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising does a good job of avoiding the "grind." While the quests often will be of the format: Kill 6 (some creature)... it's often for the purpose of collecting some needed item from them, and it's typically only once per creature. You don't end up having to kill six somethings only to kill 10 more later. You may have to kill some of them standing in the way of some other objective you have, but you don't get the repetition of doing the same thing over and over. Additionally, the most of the quests are relatively short in nature, and there are a lot of them to do, so rather than getting stuck on some quest or having to break up a quest into multiple gaming sessions, I could usually complete several quests within a single gaming session.

Those who know me know that I enjoy a good pun. They also know that I'm more likely to create a long build-up that leads to a bad pun than to come up with a good one. That said, I love the large number of punny quest names that abound in Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising, with names such as: Owner of a Broken Cart, Snakes on the Plains, Wolf Clothing, Bear Necessities. These quests are very much appropriate to the game, itself, but the names are plucked from pop culture. There have been a few that have actually made me wince... no facepalms, though. And, before you say it, yes, I know that other MMORPGs will do this, as well, but Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising has a lot more than its fair share, from what I've seen so far.

You can track up to 30 active quests, and I find that I will keep nearly that many active quests most of the time. It's a good idea to get a few quests stacked up, as there will often be different quests whose areas overlap, so you can cut down on your idle travel time by knocking a couple out at the same time.

As of this writing, there is no PVP gameplay. I prefer PVE gameplay, anyway, so I'm personally not missing much, but PVP players would likely find themselves a bit disgruntled. Other standard fare which were missing at launch, but are intended for a post-launch add-on include harvesting, crafting and auctions. I really enjoyed playing the PVE quests that I did, but... as of right now, that's pretty much all there is in the game, so if you're not big on PVE, you might want to jump in a bit later.


Trahimur omnes laudis studio

Ah, the difficulty of Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising... For the most part, I found that I could get by pretty well with a bit of button-mashing. Simply spamming my feats and letting the auto attacks hit when there was no feat ready at the moment worked for me most of the time. With my Gladiator, I found that the headbutt was a good move, as it stuns opponents, and there's also a wrestling move that performs either a grapple or a some form of submission, which deals decent damage, but also prevents your opponent from fighting back while during the attack, allowing your companions to wail on them uninterrupted. Mighty nice.

However, being too eager to explore higher-level territories can get you in a real pinch. If you stick to the areas appropriate to your current level, you'll find that there's a lot of quests to go on and lots of interesting story to discover. If you find a hostile who's several levels above you and you're not playing with a group of friends, you probably are better off to make note of where the area is and then carefully leave and return when you're packing more power.

One thing that helps reduce the difficulty level is the ability to get around quickly. There don't appear to be any mounts in Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising, but, instead, there are Pegasus statues that you can quickly teleport to, once you've been to that one once on foot. There are similar modes of transport in other MMORPGs, but the cooldown for these in Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising is just five minutes, meaning you can zip about pretty frequently, if you're picking off quests... by the time you've gotten somewhere and completed a short quest, you're ready to zip off to another location.

All told, I wouldn't describe Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising as difficult, but I would describe it as fun... and if you try to take on a dungeon by yourself, you'll find things get quite a bit more dicey.

Game Mechanics:

Di! Ecce hora!
Uxor mea me necabit!
-vere tuus

Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising is definitely not a game without its issues. There are some strange graphical glitches that can kill the suspension of disbelief from time to time, such as the strange load-in of models when you start up the game... and all you see at first are the models of the weapons running around and the occasional misalignment when performing grappling /wrestling moves, but these are forgivable, in my mind, and are likely to be improved with future updates. I also experienced a strange clipping issue, whereby I ended up in a city - accidentally - and manage to walk all the way through it and was able to find a place that I could get out, even though the loading screen for the city never came up and the city was empty and half-formed. (I'm not surprised the loading screen didn't activate; I didn't enter through a gate... I wasn't intending to enter the city; I was too close and happened to jump at the wrong place and time.) All these are minor and are highly forgivable issues, as they didn't really detract from the fun of playing the game.

Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising would definitely benefit from some bug fixes here and there, but I would recommend it to anyone interested in Ancient Rome or Latin and looking for a new MMORPG to play. There are features missing that are intended to be added post-launch, if the game gets enough interest to support it, such as crafting, harvesting, auctions and PVP gameplay. This game could be awesome, in time, but seems rushed to market. In fact, Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising could have been done as a typical RPG, given the heavy PVE bias, and may have been more approachable without a monthly fee.

In my personal opinion, however, Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising is worth giving a chance... Rome wasn't built in a day, you know...

-Geck0, GameVortex Communications
AKA Robert Perkins

Minimum System Requirements:

Windows XP, Pentium 4 or AMD 3.0 GHz, 2 GB RAM, DirectX 9 compatible video card: Pixel shader and Vertex shader compatible hardware with 512MB of texture memory, Broadband Internet Connection, DVD-ROM, 20 GB Hard drive space, Internet Explorer version 7

Recommended System Requirements:

Windows 7, Dual or Quad core Intel or AMD, 4 GB RAM, DirectX 9 compatible video card: Pixel shader and Vertex shader compatible hardware with 1024MB of texture memory, Broadband Internet Connection, DVD-ROM, 20 GB Hard drive space, Internet Explorer Version 7


Test System:

MS Windows XP Home Edition, AMD Dual-Core, 3.11 GHz, 2 GB RAM, Award Modular BIOS v6.00PG, Gateway HD2201 21" HDMI Monitor, Sony SDM-HS73 Monitor, ATI Radeon HD 2400 (256 MB) , A30 Gaming Headset, Realtek HD Audio, Creative SB X-Fi, 1.5 TB Western Digital Caviar Green SATA Hard Drive, Sony DVD RW, Cable Modem, Logitech Wireless Gaming Mouse G700

Related Links:

Microsoft Xbox 360 Trenched iPad Color Bandits HD

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated