Full Mojo Rampage [Preview] — Voodoo Never Felt So Fun!
August 9, 2013
Full Mojo Rampage is an ARPG with a heavy voodoo theme. You run around as a practitioner of voodoo, servicing the voodoo gods, called Loa, and cleaning up the messes that they make..
The game is fairly straightforward. Players navigate a top-down map firing bolts of mojo at assorted macabre villains. For each quest you only get one life, and each quest contains several stages to play through. The overworld map and each level contained within are procedurally generated. The randomness helps keep the game fresh, as each death sends players back to the beginning levels of each quest. Each quest has a different objective with the intent of varying the gameplay. The first quest given is to help Baron Samedi, who opened several portals that need closing. Early stages have the player locating and destroying portals that the Baron opened. After cemetery based stages, players are pitted against Mandingo, a powerful risen skeleton.
At the start of the game, players have the options of customizing their avatar in certain ways. First, players can choose the mask their avatar will wear. Currently, only three available, but placeholder art indicates that more are coming. Players also can choose which of the Loa they worship, as the Loa grant special powers. Ghede gives players totems that shoot and fear enemies, while Erzulie grants a speed boost and a tear attack that shoots three boomerang-like projectiles.
This was especially handy when facing off against some shield-wielding skeletons. The shields would block frontal attacks, so the tears would be able to damage them when returning and hitting the skeletons in the back. Additionally, there are also pins that can be used to increase stats like speed, attack power, or inventory size. Some of the more powerful pins can be purchased with gold earned from playing through the game, as gold is persistent from play-through to play-through.
Base controls use keyboard and mouse, though it is unclear if controller support will be added, as the twin-stick setup might feel more intuitive for some. The layout worked well enough though, as I could engage a cluster of enemies and then back up using the keyboard while firing away with my mouse. One thing to watch out for is that even though you may clear an area on the map, more enemies may spawn. Being in a cemetery, enemies such as zombies and skeletons emerge from the ground, and just because an area looks clear does not mean it is. Oftentimes I would kill a group of skeletons to clear an area, proceed into the next encounter, and then strategically fall back only to have more skeletons arise and prove to be a hassle.
Killing enemies yields gold as well as health- and mojo-recharging orbs. Player’s health bars can only be recharged with health orbs or potions and it does not recharge between levels. Players also have a mojo bar that dictates how many of their Loa-granted spells they can use. The mojo bar does refill, but it can be helped with orbs and potions. Players can also find wands that allow them to briefly shoot upgraded projectiles — some shoot multiple projectiles, others shoot lightning charges instead of energy balls. These goods can be found in tombstones and treasure chests spread across the map. There are also relics to equip that grant small stat bonuses. Two relics can be equipped at once, and with only three or four inventory slots, players will find themselves throwing valuable items back on the ground due to a lack of space.
Each quest has several achievements associated with it that grant item or gold rewards. Achievements vary in difficulty from finishing a level without taking any damage to killing a boss like Mandingo using only spells.
Graphically, Full Mojo Rampage is a whimsical game about a dark topic. It features skeletons, ghosts, and zombies in a stylized and cartoony artstyle. The characters themselves are bright, as a green circle surrounds the character and leads into a large arrow that indicates where the mouse is aiming. There are markers for tracking enemy projectiles and bright pathways to suggest where vendors are located. The voodoo masks make the avatars appear slightly silly. While the cemetary itself is a dim location, the items found within give it life and light.
The music for Full Mojo Rampage is endearingly haunting. It evokes images of halloween night, with crows cawing and use of (what sounds like) a harpsichord. The music is fun and spooky without being oppressive. It features sounds that invoke ghosts, but does so with a melody that underscores the game’s fun.
There will be multiplayer when Full Mojo Rampage is released. Additionally, more quests will be available. It will be interesting to see how Full Mojo Rampage winds up, because so far it is promising to be a fun game.