Torchlight: Infinite preview – can it hold a Torch to its predecessors?

We got our hands on beta access for upcoming ARPG, Torchlight: Infinite. Can it help the series reach new lights? Well, you're in for an illuminating experience

A crow facing away from a warrior in Torchlight Infinite

Having spent plenty of time playing Torchlight II back in the day, I was naturally very excited to get my paws on beta access to Torchlight: Infinite, the upcoming entry into the series. With its flashy graphics and new twists on the traditional isometric, action role-playing dungeon crawler, I had high hopes that it would scratch the itch that I had almost forgotten existed (and one that Torchlight III couldn’t quite reach). Well, I’m pleased to say, Torchlight Infinite hasn’t disappointed me so far.

Set 200 years after the events of Torchlight II, Torchlight: Infinite plunges you into a prosperous era of tech, which is embodied through the vivid characters and high-tech equipment and enemies you encounter. Like the previous Torchlight games, the focus is put on fast-paced combat and flexible hero-building, as well as a myriad of unique pets to assist you in battle.

I picked up the beta for Android, and found the mobile combat to be quite similar to Wild Rift. It’s easy to pick up, with the standard joystick at the bottom-left of the screen, and your abilities on the right. Early in the game, there’s a satisfying feeling of power provided by your explosive magic attacks, which only grow alongside you as you delve deeper.

The arstyle is unique and visually pleasing, with characters taking on a chunky, stylistic appearance, while the world around you still has that gorgeous grunginess, full of carefully crafted details and steampunk elements that made the series appeal to me in the first place. I personally enjoy this updated artistic approach, though some hardcore fans of the original games may be left a little unsatisfied.

Torchlight Infinite screenshot showing the player character followed by Crow Aria

While it may feel easy to fall into the rhythm of the combat early in the game, a pleasantly surprising amount of depth can be found beneath the surface. With talent points, each skill having its own subnodes, buffs on weapons complimenting certain abilities, pets that fit around your build, and more, there’s plenty to sink your teeth into, allowing you to tailor your character to your personal playstyle, sustaining that feeling of flexibility given in the original Torchlight games.

a pleasantly surprising amount of depth can be found beneath the surface

The abilities and host of different enemies keep battles feeling fresh, and the wide range of maps gives you plenty to explore. Overall, the combat and general gameplay feel very fluid, like a fine mix between mobile MOBAs and the original Torchlight. It may not appeal as much to diehard fans of the original two games, but it’s a great little ARPG romp that makes itself accessible to new players and mobile users without sacrificing much of its depth and sense of identity.

A screenshot of Torchlight Infinite combat

I really enjoyed my time with Torchlight: Infinite so far. It’s currently still in closed beta, so some features may be liable to change, but I look forward to seeing what the future holds for this stylistic, fun little gem. Be sure to check back soon, as we’ll be turning this into a full review when the final build is available. For now, you can check out the discussion forums and dev blogs for any news regarding Torchlight: Infinite, and info on its official launch across multiple platforms.