Gauntlet Legends is the first fully 3D game in the Gauntlet series. It expands the number of levels, uses a more birds-eye view with a dynamic camera that follows the player(s), and now its campaign is more focused on its leveling system similar to the quest mode in Gauntlet 4.
A mage named Garm summoned the demon Skorne long ago using the power of thirteen runestones. Skorne wasn't so into the idea of having a master, so he turned on Garm and banished him to the depths of the Underworld. Following that, he scattered the runestones used to summon him across the four realms of the world in an attempt to prevent anyone from gathering them again. Players are thrust into the role of recovering four keys and the thirteen runestones from the different worlds in order to defeat Skorne. The four original characters from the original Gauntlet--Warrior, Valkyrie, Archer, and Wizard--return in Legends.
The combat of Legends revolves around the use of basic ranged attacks, basic melee attacks, magic, and potent power attacks. Each character has their own cosmetic variance of attacks but combat is mechanically similar.
Melee and ranged attacks are used at their respective distances. Magic can be used in one of three ways: an explosion of magic going outward from the character, a damaging shield that surrounds the character, or a thrown potion that explodes when it hits the ground. Power attacks can come in three different varieties. The kind of power attack is determined by a meter above the character's section at the bottom of the screen. The meter slowly fills up as the player causes more damage. The first (or green) level attack produces a more powerful version of the character's normal melee attack. The second (or yellow) level attack produces a 360-degree attack. The third and final (or red) level attack produces an indestructible projectile attack that annihilates any enemies in its path.
Besides the power attacks, the other main variation of the gameplay in Legends in through the use of items. Usually, items are found within treasure chests and barrels scattered throughout the different levels, with the occasional item being found out in the open. On top of that, many of the items are available from the store in the hub between levels. Most of the items in the game fall into general categories with a some outliers being one of a kind.
- Amulets - Amulets add extra power to the character's standard attack, both melee and ranged. There are four different kinds of amulets (light, fire, electric, and acid) but the difference in merely cosmetic. No one type of amulet is more effective than the other. Only one kind of amulet can be equipped at a time, as well. Amulets last a maximum of 90 seconds.
- Breaths - Breaths attack enemies in cone in front of the player, with enough strength to take out weaker enemies in one hit. Similar to amulets, breaths come in variations of fire, electric, and acid (no light). Breaths can be stocked up to a maximum of 15 charges.
- Potions - Potions have multiple uses in Legends. They're most often used to kill Death, who can pop up from random chests or barrels throughout levels to drain health from the player. Potions are the only way to kill Death. They can also be used to attack enemies in a circle near the player, with the radius of that circle increasing as the player's magic skill increases. Potions can be dropped at one's feet, thrown a short distance, or converted into a short-term shield.
- Shields - Unlike potion shields, item shields are serious business. Coming in either fire or electric, shields from a wall in front (fire) or around (electric) the player that protects from harm and damages any enemies that come into contact with it.
- Shot Multipliers - 3 or 5-way shot multipliers add additional projectiles to a character's ranged attack, either 3 or 5 shots...obviously.
The other significant items that players will come across are keys and gold. Keys unlock things. Gold buys stuff. Fun for all!
Characters & Character Progression
The fantasy characters from the original Gauntlet return for Legends and each has greater starting ability in a single attribute than the other characters.
- Warrior - Strength
- Wizard - Magic
- Archer - Speed
- Valkyrie - Armor
Characters in Legends can level up from 1 to 99 throughout the game, increasing five different categories: speed, strength, armor, magic, and health. Speed determines both attack speed and movement speed. Strength increases ranged and melee attack power. Armor decreases the amount of damage taken from attacks. Magic increases a character's ability with magic, making all magic attacks more effective. And health increases simply that, health.
While each of the attributes naturally increases through leveling up, stat increases can also be bought from the store.