Gods Will Fall has a quite sadly generic title, however that belies how fascinating and intriguing it truly is. Gods Will Fall additionally appears like a smorgasbord of differing influences from numerous fashionable video games of the previous couple of years. That, additionally, belies how uncommon it’s with all its completely different items coming collectively in live performance.
So, what’s Gods Will Fall? It may possibly finest be described as a hack and slash, with components of motion RPGs and roguelikes thrown in for good measure, contextualized by storytelling taken proper out of Darkish Souls and Hole Knight, wrapped up in a jarringly incongruent artstyle that may be higher suited in one thing like Fortnite than this. Aside from that final ingredient, all the things else comes collectively surprisingly effectively. The sport provides you management of eight heroes, who’re on a mission to tackle the gods of their world, who, over the millennia, have turn out to be oppressive and merciless, tormenting their followers and raining misfortune on the land.
These eight heroes (who’re randomized on every run) find yourself washed up on the island populated by their gods. Every god populates one dungeon, and one among your eight heroes can enter a dungeon at a time. Gods Will Fall, very similar to Hades earlier than it, sidesteps one of the widespread points with roguelikes (their reliance on procedural technology) by having every dungeon be handcrafted, and glued between runs. The format and aesthetic of a dungeon by no means adjustments.
“Gods Will Fall’s true stroke of brilliance is within the push for emergent storytelling it represents, which builds upon its permadeath system.”
What does change every time is the issue of a dungeon. A dungeon which may have been the simplest throughout your earlier run may find yourself being the toughest this time round. The issue influences which enemies you encounter inside as effectively, that means that whereas the layouts are fastened, the precise enemies you encounter in a dungeon will differ from one run to the opposite. There’s no technique to know what issue a dungeon has with out really stepping into as soon as – which ends up in some extraordinarily fascinating conditions because of the sport’s demise and relationships techniques.
The best way the sport handles demise is a mix of permadeath and the sort of corpse operating popularized by Darkish Souls, after which emulated by video games corresponding to Hole Knight. As soon as your hero steps right into a dungeon, the one approach they will get out is that if they get to its finish and defeat its patron god. In the event that they die, they’re caught in there. However, they don’t seem to be misplaced to you. If one other hero enters the dungeon and finishes it efficiently, they find yourself saving all of the heroes who might have fallen in that dungeon earlier than. So no demise is actually everlasting – until all eight of your heroes find yourself trapped in these gods’ realms, wherein case it’s sport over, and this run is completed for.
Gods Will Fall’s true stroke of brilliance is within the push for emergent storytelling it represents, which builds upon that permadeath system. Your eight heroes have completely different relationships with one another, completely different backstories, and completely different relationships with the gods. You’ll have a hero who’s affected by a selected god in his goals every night time, who finally ends up being terrified when you close to that god’s dungeon. On this case, one can find their stats affected by a debuff in the event you try to make use of them in opposition to that god. Conversely, they could wish to show themselves in opposition to their tormentor, and see a buff to their stats. Even heroes who might share no particular relationship with a god may discover themselves buffed or debuffed – if, for instance, a buddy of theirs went in, and didn’t emerge out (that means they died inside), they might get demotivated, and undergo depressed stats. Or they might wish to avenge that buddy, and discover their stats getting a lift.
These techniques mesh collectively very well to create an interlocking framework of emergent narratives, that mix to assist every run really feel completely different from the final. Very similar to Hades earlier than it, Gods Will Fall achieves this by counting on contextualization to realize the variation, in order that it will probably ship a roguelike with out forsaking hand crafted stage design.
“These techniques mesh collectively very well to create an interlocking framework of emergent narratives, that mix to assist every run really feel completely different from the final. Very similar to Hades earlier than it, Gods Will Fall achieves this by counting on contextualization to realize the variation, in order that it will probably ship a roguelike with out forsaking hand crafted stage design.”
Gods Will Fall makes use of different techniques married with its narrative design to help its gameplay as effectively. For instance, to discourage turtling and defensive play (which is a matter that always plagues fight targeted video games), Gods Will Fall ties every dungeon’s boss’ energy to the variety of enemies nonetheless left alive in that dungeon. In different phrases, the extra enemies you kill, the simpler the ultimate boss struggle for that dungeon turns into. To encourage offensive play, the sport additionally has a “Valor” system, the place even once you lose well being, being offensive in fight nets you valor, which you could then convert to misplaced segments of well being (that means very actually, offense can usually be the perfect protection in Gods Will Fall). Gods Will Fall additionally makes its dungeons not caves or grottos bodily located on the island you’re on, however separate realms in different dimensions accessed by portals on the island – which signifies that the sport is free of the duty of adhering to bodily coherence, and every dungeon can have plenty of variation in aesthetic and theme.
As a lot as Gods Will Fall will get proper, there are positively some missteps too. The largest one right here is the artwork fashion. The artwork fashion feels very vibrant and plasticky, like one thing you may see in a cell sport, or Fortnite, or Orcs Should Die. That’s incongruous with the tone the sport desires to strike, however in and of itself, that doesn’t need to be an issue. The difficulty is that the sport itself calls consideration to it by having a stunning artwork fashion it makes use of for its storytelling and world constructing segments, that adequately strike the stability between feeling darkish and foreboding, whereas additionally trying like one thing out of folklore. The sport begins with that artwork fashion, after which abruptly switches to the Fortnite look. Which, it’s positive, and it appears good for what it’s, I simply don’t really feel it’s as a lot in tandem with the remainder of the bundle as all the things else is.
Gods Will Fall additionally suffers from some bugs (together with at the very least one I encountered as early because the tutorial, the place I principally received caught in a room with the best way to maneuver ahead not opening, forcing me to restart), although I’ve hopes that these could also be addressed in future updates. The controls can usually be finnicky, particularly the parry, which depends on you rolling in the direction of the enemy at simply the precise time, an train in frustration, particularly when put next with the sport’s lack of a lock on (which in any other case isn’t an issue in any respect, however does exacerbate the difficulty with the parry system).
The problems the sport does face, nonetheless, don’t actually detract from what it does obtain. Gods Will Fall has an sadly bland title, however beneath that unappealing and generic moniker is a tightly designed sport with a number of components working in tandem and marriage to ship a one among a form expertise that additional helps evolve roguelikes, and take away the normal frustrations related to them.
This sport was reviewed on Xbox One.
Handcrafted ranges that sidestep the shortcomings of procedural technology; emergent storytelling permits for contextual variation with every run; various dungeon aesthetics
Jarringly incongruous artstyle; finnicky controls
Gods Will Fall’s smattering of influences and banal title undersell a few of its extra good design selections, all of which work collectively to ship one of many extra imaginative and completed roguelikes in latest reminiscence.