Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest Hands-On Preview

At E3 2009, Sony revealed its take on motion controls — a precision Wiimote called the Move. It promised epic, one-to-one sword battles, and if we dared to dream, a Star Wars game that finally did justice to Jedi weaponry. Zindagi Games came closest to that dream with the Move launch title Sports Champions, finding a mechanical balance but lacking depth. At E3 2011, Zindagi returns in hopes of delivering the swordplay Movers have pleaded for with a cartoony third-person castle crash, Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest.

What first strikes careful observers is the referential nature of this title. MediEvil remains a PlayStation classic, even receiving a remake on the PSP, MediEvil Resurrection. And Deadmund’s Quest feels as cheap an allusion as The Asylum mockbusters Transmorphers and The Da Vinci Treasure (these are real movies). Why Zindagi didn’t capitalize on this irony is beyond me.

What it lacks in self-awareness, Deadmund’s Quest makes up for in precision. The caped player character moves from encounter to encounter, uncontrolled, and wields a healthy variety of medieval weaponry. The sword works, simply enough. It suffers no lag and connects with enemies (small, medium, to vente skeletons) intuitively. The inability to stab or perform complex maneuvers is disappointing, but not damning.

Using the shield requires a simple press of the Move button, parrying melee and ranged attacks well. Like Sports Champions, players can go yeoman by holding the Move button and reaching for an arrow from the imaginary quiver, then pointing at the desired target. A grappling hook functions similarly, but only activates at specific, overt points, much like key-turning, among other environmental interactions.

But SHURIKENS…. If there’s anything that the Move should do, it’s this. Out of place in the European dark ages? Sure, but throwing ninja stars at lightning speed (as fast as the flick of a wrist, endlessly) has to be the greatest unintentional consequence of the PlayStation Move. In Medieval Moves, they’re overpowered, so players will overuse them, which, to me, is fine. I say just rename the game “Shuriken Stars” and be done with it.

So “Shuriken Stars” can’t escape its casual game label but it seems to be one of the most responsive, fully realized offerings for the Move. It holds no pretense and boasts nothing beyond its simple station. Whacking away with a Move controller is the point, right? And SHURIKENS!


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Author: Dan Crabtree View all posts by
Dan is Managing Editor for GamerNode and a freelance gaming writer. His dog is pretty great. Check him out on Twitter @DanRCrabtree.

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