DeathSpank is an action-RPG developed by Ron Gilbert, creator of Monkey Island, in conjunction with Hothead Games. The player controls DeathSpank on his quest for The Artifact, in a satirical single-player campaign that pokes fun at fantasy and role-playing cliches.
As one may be able to guess about DeathSpank, the story is only barely-sensical. The game opens up with the coveted Artifact just barely out of DeathSpank's reach. After an appropriately lengthy prologue, DeathSpank finally obtains The Artifact only to lose it to a group of the evil Lord Von Prong's Orque henchmen. The henchmen leave DeathSpank with no equipment (though the game feels no need to go for the "Left For Dead" scenario). DeathSpank reaches a nearby town, and after regaining a weapon and helping some of the townsfolk, the Mayor contracts our hero to recover a group of orphans that have gone missing. With his new, trusty Orphan Sack (that is, a sack which one stuffs orphans into for safe-keeping), DeathSpank sets out on the land (which include areas such as The Haunted Forest, The Enchanted Forest, The Turtle Lake, The Enchanted Forest Logging Camp, and many more) to help the downtrodden, rescue the orphans of the land, help the Mayor with his recycling campaign, vanquish Lord Von Prong, and, most importantly, get some loot!
DeathSpank is a loot-driven action-RPG surrounded by dialog and puzzles reminiscent of point-and-click adventure games.
The Justice Meter is charged as DeathSpank slaughters more and more of his enemies. This will allow him to perform special attacks with certain weapons. These weapons are identified by a purple circle behind the illustration in the equipment screen. When selected, a description of their special effect is supplied. By finding Runes, you can combine the special abilities of two weapons simultaneously to combine effects.
As DeathSpank searches for The Artifact, he will encounter many NPCs in need of assistance and marked by an exclamation point over their heads. By talking to these characters, the player will obtain a quest which will then be added to the quest log. The player may be asked to complete a simple task or solve a more intricate puzzle. Puzzles are often solved by finding and combining different items to create the desired results. Once the task requested by the quest-giver has been completed, DeathSpank will need to return to an NPC to claim a reward. In some cases, the NPC may have a new quest available once one has been completed.
The dialog when talking to NPCs closely resembles that of traditional point-and-click adventure games. You will see a portrait of the character on the screen along with text as they speak. At key points in the conversation, the player will have an opportunity to respond. A box will appear at the bottom of the screen with a number of possible responses from which the player may select.
True to the conventions of the genre, the game distributes new gear for DeathSpank in the form of random loot drops. As the player kills enemies, they will drop items on the ground which you may pick up. The player will often find new weapons, armor, and collectibles which may be equipped to improve DeathSpank's abilities. Support items such as potions and food can also be found, which are used for recovering health.\
One unusual feature included is a Lost and Found system. Lost and Found bins are placed throughout the world where DeathSpank may retrieve items which were dropped previously but never picked up.
As promised by the developers, DeathSpank features loot! And lots of it. However, the equipment found in the game lacks the depth of "perks" that rival games have. In other games, such as Diablo or Torchlight, it's common for equipment or weapons to have health/ mana regeneration stats or leech health stats or reflect damage stats. None of those things exist in the universe of DeathSpank. Armor in the game strictly increases the number of hit points of the titular character, while maybe granting some elemental ( Fire, Ice, Undead, Nature) resistance. With weapons, it's strictly about the physical (or base) damage plus whatever elemental bonus damage the weapon may have. This often makes the best choice for weapons and armor obvious throughout the game (there is even a button to automatically equip the best armor as it becomes available). All of the weapons and armor in the game can be seen on the character model.
If another controller is connected, the game will prompt the player to press start to join at which point they will manifest in the game as Sparkles the Wizard. Sparkles is a limited character who may provide support to DeathSpank. He has a limited number of spells and abilities including a healing spell and can also pick up items which have been dropped.
DeathSpank uses polygonal graphics and an overhead perspective. The world is almost spherical and unrolls and you proceed in any direction. Many of the details on the world are flat creating what has been described as a "pop-up book" aesthetic. Characters and environments are colorful and highly stylized. Filters are applied as DeathSpank moves to different areas to create different looks.
- It has an open world with with a similar spherical look to that of games like Super Mario Galaxy and Animal Crossing: Wild World.
- The Canadian government funded the game.
- Voice Actor Michael Dobson is featured as the voice of DeathSpank.
- The 10 Runes, which are stored in your inventory, spell out DeathSpank.
This game features 2 avatar awards.
- Unicorn Poop T-Shirt ( male / female) - Kill the twin dragons guarding the artifact
- Dragon Hatchling - Complete Ms. Heybenstance's quest to save her dragon hatchlings.
PC System Requirements
- OS: Windows XP/Vista/Windows 7
- Processor: Intel Pentium 4 (or equivalent with SSE2 support) running at 1.7 GHz or greater
- Memory: 1 GB of ram, 1.5 GB (Vista and Windows 7)
- Hard Disk Space: at least 2 GB of free HD space
- Video Card: ATI Radeon X1900 GT 256MB and the Nvidia GeForce 6800 Ultra 256MB cards; Shader 2.0 and 24 bit depth buffer support required
- DirectX®: DirectX9 Jun 2010
- Local co-op requirements: A controller is required for the second player
Mac System Requirements
- OS: Mac OS X v10.5.8 or v10.6
- Processor: Intel
- CPU Speed: 1.8 GHz
- Memory: 1.5 GB RAM
- Hard Disk Space: 2 GB free disk space
- Video Card: ATI Radeon x1900 or better / NVIDIA 8600 or better
- Video Memory (VRAM): 128 MB or higher