You’ve ventured across Midgard, slaying robe-hating goblins and taking down evil masterminds instead of talking out the issue. What’s a wizard to do now? Clearly the answer is head to Vietnam.
The joke DLC for a joke game, Magicka: Vietnam adds a story mission, an extra survival mode, a spell or two and an extra robe to wear. We won’t talk too much about the rest of the DLC, since there’s not much to say other than they’re amusing, but the main draw here is the Vietnam Rescue Mission.
In the mission, which takes less than an hour as long as you don’t keep dying, you run into Vietnam, take out towers, rescue prisoners, blow up weapons caches and escape on your helicopter. Yes, it’s really short for DLC, but it’s designed as a challenge map, where you complete as many objectives as possible and escape quickly for a higher score. To mitigate the length, you can play online with friends, and only one of you needs the DLC to play it. (It’s an honorable move. Kudos, Arrowhead.)
The mission plays a lot differently from the fantasy campaign. For starters, there are guns everywhere; in fact, unless you pick a base robe that includes a sword or something, there are only guns. They range from smaller guns to automatic rifles to rocket launchers, and many are more useful than the sword ever was. The Vietnam robe also includes a staff that throws grenades, which are useful for getting behind walls and cover. (You can use this robe in the base game, which does add some variety to that, but we wish there were more elements that could cross over.)
Of course, it wouldn’t be Magicka without pop culture references. It leans heavily on Rambo and Tropic Thunder, but you find the occasional other joke, and there are a few bonus “mea culpa” jokes poking fun at the base game’s glitch-filled launch. Fans of the original campaign will enjoy appearances by Vlad, who has somehow become a captain at some point.
Magicka: Vietnam isn’t the kind of DLC that feels like a whole extra game. For those who enjoyed Magicka and wanted more, though, Vietnam hits the spot. We look forward to the next release, and cross our fingers that we at least get a 3-level campaign or something in that one. For now, though, this is definitely five bucks worth of fun.
Pros: Fans will love it, which is the idea of DLC
Cons: Actual mission’s a bit short