Panda Knife Tree understand what partying is really about: friends, fantastical beings, and the ability to gut these rare and precious beings so you can rifle through their entrails for loot. Mwa-ha-ha-ha. Er. Their upcoming browser-based game Ultimate Party promises to bring you exactly that, and then some. It won’t just be your standard isometric ARPG, oh no. It’s supposed to be an MMO ARPG, which seems to mean “You can play with 255 like-minded hellions instead of just six.”
The website is infused with techno-eldritch terminology, ranging from “interpolated atmospherics and image based lighting” to “choreographing virtual actors.” What does that all mean? I don’t know. I really don’t. It might have something to do with hailing Cthulhu for a tea appointment. But, that doesn’t matter. Because the reason I’m here, and the reason I’m writing words about Ultimate Party, is because of its combat animation. Look at this. There is a delectable smoothness to the way the barbarian in this GIF swipes, lunges, and punches at the air with his shield. He isn’t just smacking the air, he has made fighting look positively balletic. And that, my friends, is a sight for cynical eyes.
I’m tentatively keen to see what Ultimate Party can bring. Despite the fact it is being billed as a true MMO ARPG, Ultimate Party doesn’t sound like it is trying to innovate either genres. Combine them, maybe. But not innovate. And that’s okay. We’re constantly inundated with new when sometimes what we really need is more of the same, except with, you know, more. The only question now is if Ultimate Party can truly rock what it has, when it finally inches into the big, blue world.