Bound By Flame – Review
Follow Genre: action, RPG
Developer: Spiders Studio
Publisher: Focus Home Interactive
Platform: PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360

Bound By Flame – Review

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Good: fun combat, good music
Bad: story decisions have little impact, bugs, bad lip synching
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In one of the most ambitious projects of Spiders Studio, they have forged Bound By Flame. Bound By Flame is an action RPG with an interactive story that tries to compete with the big RPG games we know today. While it doesn’t quite make it to the top, it’s still a very fun experience and a force to be reckoned with!



The story takes place in Vertiel, a once peaceful land. However, Ice Lords have invaded your domain and have summoned a Dead-Army. There has been a war going on as long as everyone can remember, maybe even 100 years. You play as a mercenary of the Pure-Blades, you are hired by the Red Scribes. The Red Scribes believe they can end the war by conjuring a powerful ritual, your job is to protect them at all costs while they try to save Vertiel.

You are quickly overwhelmed and are forced to retreat to your last stand, the conjuring room. The conjuring was almost finished but somehow it was interrupted and a strange presence has invaded your body and soul. A demon now resides within you, trying to take over your body. This may sound bad, but the demon gives you cool fire powers which are believed to be able to defeat the Ice Lords once and for all.

The story then further unfolds as you make some hard decisions. Which one of your companions do you give up? Which one of them do you build a good relationship with? Do you want your humanity or power which ultimately leads to your body transforming into a demon? The choices are all up to you, however these choices don’t have a huge impact on the main story.

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“A little cleavage was all it took to get you to jump into the arms of a Lady of the Frozen Shadows… and you are supposed to be our savior? Do you really believe that?” – Eolas
I obviously chose to save the big boobed woman instead of an old man while venturing through the story.



The graphics in Bound By Flame are not the best, some areas and details are rough around the edges, but not up to the point where it becomes annoying. Character details and movements are well refined though, whereas some of the “less important” areas have a lot of flaws to them. Enemies and weaponry are also pretty neat. The details on them are pretty good and contribute to how fun the game is and looks.

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Most of the music was quite enjoyable, in particular the boss fight music. The tracks are made to get you hyped and pumped. Much like other action games. Besides that, the final boss fight was one of the most stunning audio video displays I’ve ever seen.

The cutscenes however are poorly lip synched, and sometimes when your companion gets stuck and tries to talk to you, you see the subtitles but not dialogue. This can be a bit annoying at times and is kind of a shame to an RPG game.

Apart from the clever jokes, blunt dialogues and your typical Scottish bloke, the sound effects are really fitting. There is a big variety of sound effects available for monsters, combat and characters.

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It all comes down to the gameplay, and Bound By Flame’s gameplay is pretty good. The controls are intuitive and easy to learn and there aren’t a huge amount of buttons that you have to use (which is expected from an RPG that also sets its mind to console gamers).

In terms of progression, the game offers a leveling system and 3 talent trees. You can specialize as warrior, hunter (rogue-like) or pyromancer. The warrior tree mainly focuses on brute force and use of your two handed sword, like… a warrior. The hunter tree focuses on agility and use of your daggers and the pyromancer tree is focused on the fire abilities that the demon gave you when he chose you as his host. The skill trees are all passive abilities which don’t seem much at first, but fully upgraded they help you greatly in combat.

Apart from specific skill trees, you can level up even more passive abilities! These can be used to increase experience by killing monsters, have monsters drop more loot, increase your hp, reduce crafting materials etc.

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When venturing into Vertiel, you can choose to take a companion (which is strongly recommended because the difficulty ramps up quickly!). Depending on which companions are still alive, you can make your choice between them. Some companions will heal you, some will tank and some are just pure mages. Talking a lot to your companions will increase your relationship with them, and there may even be some action when you finally get some intimacy in between the battles…

A lot of monsters and objects in the world will give you crafting materials, which can then be used to craft hp potions, mana potions, traps, crossbow bolts and more. You can even spend your materials by upgrading your gear, giving weapons more damage or utility and buffing up your armor. While this may sound awesome, the crafting system really isn’t all that big, which is a shame.

As for combat, it is very well polished! When playing on normal and up, it will always require you to be alert. One little block or dodge can be the difference between life and death. Dodging or blocking will also give counter attacks or other bonuses, taking in account that you have the right talents.


While Bound By Flame may seem a little bit rough around the edges, it is a very enjoyable and fun experience. The various bugs and glitches will surely be patched in the near future, which will make the game a better experience. It has fast and well-polished combat, an intriguing story, good music and one of the most stunning final battles I’ve ever seen. And while big RPG games are still waiting to be released, why not try this one out in the meantime?


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