Full Mojo Rampage (Xbox One Review)
Voodoo, and the culture surrounding it, is a mystifying topic to explore and understand. With the likes of supernatural powers and entities it would make an unusual and almost exotic blueprint for a captivating video game. Originally released back in 2014, Full Mojo Rampage clamored onto the steam homefront with shock and awe as the vast majority of gamers that tried this gem were overwhelmingly pleased that they did. Fast-forward to 2016 and Full Mojo Rampage has dusted itself off after years of rituals and secret rites to make its way to the console marketplace where I was lucky enough to have myself a go.
As a voodoo newbie with the unremitting desire for voodoo enlightenment, you set forth to please the almighty voodoo gods known as the “Loa”. With the “voodoo reality” host to all manner of haunted and grim horrors your quest to satisfy the gods will not be an easy one. Traveling through different realms that the gods command, boasting your abilities at every turn and mastering your inner Mojo. That is the mission set out before you.
Spanning across a total of 4 quests your main objective is to please the three voodoo gods; Baron Samedi, Maddam Brigitte and Damballah. Differing only in appearance, they all have the same thing in common, to make life a living hell for those who try to appease them. Proving yourself will be no easy feat as you’ll plunder through a series of randomly generated dungeons en-route to facing each god’s menacing minions and bosses – on your lonesome or with a friend. These procedurally generated dungeons diversify Full Mojo’s stagnant objectives. Stages differ in theme from cemeteries to molten volcanic plains to brewing factories – you name a scene and it’s probably in there. The only thing holding these perceptively inviting stages back is the monotonous objectives that fail to differ from the last. The type of objective is usually linked to the quest you’re on (or the god you’re trying to please) as Baron Samedi will have you destroying totems, Maddam Brigitte will have you collecting a mass of nonsensical items and Damballah will have you hunt down a series of tough bosses that are all pretty much clones of one another. It’s hard to place an importance on these objectives as without them I feel that Full Mojo Rampage would be just as enjoyable as it is now; with the objectives being a slight inconvenience for the sake of the “story”.
As you gradually make your way through the ever-changing dungeons you will find numerous artifices known as “Mojos” that bolster your stats and give you supplementary bonuses depending on the Mojo you have equipped. These devices are unfortunately random so generating a good combination of abilities is all dependent upon RNG and and your luck on finding an appropriate “Mojo Mixer”.
Mojo Mixers are “combination machines” that merge the statistics of two Mojos and creating one greater Mojo. These are few and far between, so finding one is, once again, in that hands of the RNG gods. Other services are available to the player amidst the chaos of each stage as well than just to the Mojo Mixers. Shops lie in the corner of some stages, offering you Mojos in exchange for some coin. Shrines offer up advice and some game changing mechanics to those who seek them; like boosts in damage or attack rate. There are also little treasure troves that contain chests that usually guarantee some useful items free of charge.
The main quests make up the bulk of the Full Mojo’s repertoire and they only really diversify in the objectives that litter them. There are some bonus challenges like Surivial mode and Endless Mode which both offer up countless hours of brain-dead fun, but there isn’t any depth to them. If you’re feeling tired of the same old repetitive combat and stages then you can head online to spice things up a bit with online multiplayer. You can partake in Deathmatch, Capture the Flag and King of the Hill, all offering a max of 8 players to interact with. It’s not much of a distraction from the main story, but again it offers up a much needed respite from the normal luck based missions. The presentation of the online functioning lobbies is questionable however, as you can only see your own characters avatar and the lobby itself is a barely recognisable list of names that doesn’t prompt the player or let them know someone else has joined the lobby. It’s a small niggle to pick at but a niggle nonetheless.
Full Mojo’s soundtrack heavily befits the overall theme of mysticism and voodoo. As you’ll often hear the ricketing a of xylophone accompanied by the wailing of ghostly sighs which give Full Mojo Rampage a Cinco De Mayo, fright night vibe that suits the creepy and ghoulish looking scenery.
Full Mojo Rampage doesn’t set itself apart much from the roguelike crowd, but stitches together a few nuances that give it an edge over general populace. The overarching theme of the day of the dead, the plethora of game changing Mojos at your disposal and the foreboding yet not-so-villainous voodoo gods that constantly put you in your place. This isn’t a title that will hold you over on your own, but invite a friend round or even jump online for some friendly and sometimes rage inducing co-op as you and your teammates blame each other for letting the team down.