Friday, August 31, 2018

Death's Gambit... Reviewed!


This game... is... challenging, and that's a good thing to an extent.


Hmmm... this game was what I thought it was... and then some.

Death's Gambit is a 2D "Souls-like" Metroidvania game, and I enjoy it... despite having my butt being handed to me many times. There is no doubt that number will go up the next time I play because there is always a tough enemy tucked in a lair somewhere... just waiting to end you (but you can't die... which I'll explain later). You don't have to go that far to encounter one of these boss enemies either... so keep the pain relieving ointment handy, and prepare to get your butt kicked as you build your character. I've been on the grind to level up so I can start to redistribute some of that pain... and it's pretty addictive.


Literally, I've been grinding... going back to the same area where I've found the most success to grind, and have leveled up to a good degree so far... while looking forward to slaying the enemies who sent me back to the drawing board. I can easily say that I'm a lot better than when I started (my archery skills can be used in a wild west style shootout at this point)... and I wanted to present you with the gameplay of that, but I recorded nearly 2 hours of white screen on new software. Yeah... THAT happened. That didn't exactly make my night, but... the show must go on.



In Death's Gambit, you are Sorun, an... undead agent of Death itself. I won't give away the story, but Sorun became a soldier like his mother... and clearly things didn't work out all that great because he's raised from the dead. He isn't just raised from the dead to run around and fight random enemies, he's part of a war waged against the legendary immortals of Siradon. Siradon is the land you venture into to take on your enemies... and some of them aren't even legendary immortals, but they can send you back to the drawing board wondering what the heck happened.

Sorun and Death have an interesting relationship... some of its comical, that got my attention. I appreciate that being added in to break things up, but... even then there some very weird eerie experiences in between gameplay. I'll give you one example... and one only. After Sorun was taken out at one point, he ended up on an island... so I tested out the water. I was able to run in it, it was shallow... so I began running (to the left). After I got a distance from the island, the skies turn dark (dark) and the water turn... red. I assume it was representing blood, and... I turned right back around and tried to run back to the island... but I ended up back in Siradon. It was trippy.

Speaking of the world of Siradon, what agent class do you want to represent while taking on its immortals? You have seven classes to choose from... like Soldier, Assassin, Blood Knight, Wizard, Noble, Sentinel, and Acolyte of Death. Their attributes and items vary, like the Soldier is an all-around fighter, while the Assassin is quick, and the Wizard uses ranged magic.

The Wizard starts off with a spellbook, while the Soldier has a sword. So you have options to approach your adventure... and even still, your movements and the way you fight can seal the deal at level 6 ahead of a level 10 if you approach the battle the right way.

Death's Gambit is packed with replay value. This 2D Action RPG is already challenging enough, but I doubt you can beat it in one seating. If you think you can... record yourself doing so. The same enemies may have you coming back again and again for a rematch... and even then, if you beat them... you can go back and give them a rematch in Heroic Mode (or start a new adventure in New Game Plus mode).

Outside of that, you also have replay value in unlocking the various Talents to boost Sorun's abilities. Using Talent Points gained in your adventure allows you to unlock talents like "Blood of the Phoenix", which lets you use feathers to remove minor status ailments and restores stamina when health is over 90%. You have 3 paths to choose from. Personally, I don't see the value in most of the talents, but that's based on my playstyle.

Replay value goes even further with Journals of Immortals. You find these journals regarding the various immortals and outside of information about that immortal... you deal 5% more damage against the boss (per book). So if you have 2 journals, that's 10% more damage to bring the pain. Like other games with achievements, the life of this game is further extended by the 34 Achievements that are available if you choose to go after them.

Visually... this is a cool looking 2D game with pixel graphics that take it easy on hard drive space and other CPU resources (LOVE IT). From the way the blades are wielded... to the way, you dismount from your horse... I think they did a great job with the animations. What would be awesome is the option to switch between pixel graphics and hand-drawn art that resembles Dragon's Crown.


Audio even sounds good. The in-game music is fitting for the adventure, but you also have the sound of the blade cutting through the air and even clinking if it hits a hard surface. Another cool sound is the releasing of the bow, and these are just to name a few things that help boost the immersive experience of this 2D game. They took what they had and made it pretty sweet... which also includes the price tag.

Price wise... the game is on point at $19.99, which is in the perfect spot. No more... no less... it's right where it needs to be. It would be sweeter at $15, but its home at $19.99.

One potential con for gamers... that I can't dock the game for... is its difficulty. Not everyone will enjoy the difficulty of Death's Gambit at all because some people don't see the enjoyment of a major challenge. The con I will put on this is... the lack of cloud saving, I can't continue on a laptop where I left off on a desktop in the office. So in order to continue a game... I have to go back to that specific PC. That sucks, I wanted to continue with my grind with a collective build up... but until they allow the cloud save... stick with the PC you game on most. PS4 gamers shouldn't have this problem.

Overall, this is an interesting adventure with enough depth and challenges to keep me coming back, and I appreciate the fact that it doesn't require a lot of juice so I can log hours on a laptop.


Fun factor: 4

Visually: 4

Replay value: 5

Price: 5


"4.5 / 5 Cool Points"


Brought to you by the... Baby Fu Clothing Co!
This game has been provided to us by Adult Swim Games!