Soul Sacrifice is here and
the drought of PS Vita games has finally broken... Decisions have consequences and
Soul Sacrifice revolves around the strengths and
consequences of these decisions. In this PS Vita exclusive about
decisions, gamers play a slave who is about to be sacrificed to
a villainous sorcerer but
before their death, they discover a hidden and forbidden book
that allows its reader to relive ancient battles of the past.
This book allows the reader to bring back powers
of battles from the past, including dark rites. However the cost
of these dark rites is sacrifice and this sacrifice could be
anything from personal belongings, to an eye or even a life.
Welcome to Soul Sacrifice, an action RPG that allows player to
bend reality in order to obtain the ultimate power and best of
all, the game supports the innovative "powers" (aka control
system) of the PS Vita.
Beautifully presented on the PS
Vita, the story of Soul Sacrifice is masterfully told with a
rich and interesting world to explore with characters steeped in
mythology, both good and evil. Before beginning the game, you
discover yourself within a cage of flesh and bone with the
sorcerer Magusar wanting to sacrifice you for a darker power.
However before your sacrifice, you are introduced by fate to the Librom, a strange book that has risen from the last person to be
sacrificed by Magusar. This sentient book is also the key to
your escape and to experience the life of Magusar. As you relive
the life of Magusar, you soon discover that his justifications
were pure as he hunted the possessed and other evil beasts that
walked the lands. As you defeat your enemies, they are
sacrificed or saved which in turn increases your powers.
The hub of the game is that of
Librom which allows you to create a new character, access
missions and equip new weapons for the adventures that you will
face. Apart from missions, there are challenges and
side chapters that can also be found in the Librom and does give
you a reprise from the main storyline. Although missions are
quite linear, once you have completed them, you can then proceed
to the next mission which in turn unlocks new equipment for your
Character creation is nothing spectacular but it
allows you to choose gender and the ability of customising their
appearance. Weapons or "offerings" play an important role in the
game and offers the player a varied diversity as you progress
through the missions. There are also bonuses to be found along
the way that
increase your players statistics and are needed for some of the
harder boss fights so finding those mysterious sigils are vital.
Battles are the highlight of the
game and can be quite challenging, especially when you summon
weapons as they have a set time that they can remain. If you
summon a weapon too long, they weaken and eventually break.
Although the combat is quite simplistic, at times Soul Sacrifice
reminds me of a button masher but timing is crucial in victory.
Some weapons are fast, some slow but with high damage and others
of the ranged variety.
You basically have the ability to
equip six weapons for your adventures. I must admit that the
developers have really thought outside the square in terms of
enemies. The reason being is that monsters were originally
animals but due to a magical pact, they have been transformed
into vile creatures. Once a monster transforms back into its
original form, the player is then given the choice of saving or
sacrificing them. Powerful stuff!
The saving or sacrificing also
works as an alignment system which allows you to go good,
neutral or evil. The boss characters when they return to their
original forms are generally humans and if you save them, they
can either become allies or your player receives a huge boost if
you sacrifice them. Thankfully to keep the combat interesting,
the missions of this game are quite diverse and there's plenty
of new and interesting weapons to be found as you explore this
dark world. Soul Sacrifice also allows for online play with up
to four players cooperatively that we found quite enjoyable,
albeit a side distraction to the main storyline.
All in all, Soul Sacrifice has
great graphics, decent sound and some really enjoyable gameplay
that is perfect for the PS Vita. The level design and the
character design is almost to die for with the creatures looking
like something out of Resident Evil. The game also contains a
wealth of content that will keep most lovers of this genre busy
for hours upon hours as they explore this wondrous world about
sacrifice and either the good or the dark arts. This is
definitely the game the PS Vita needed that we would recommend
to all owners of the Vita.