We analyze one of the first titles for PlayStation 5, which falls short in its essential sections.
“What strange creatures are brothers!”, Jane Austen
The first games of a new console always carry a stigma typical of the ‘line up’ output: demonstrate the power of the next generation, what a new system is capable of, what that hardware can do. And sometimes that takes a toll. Godfall, which has been in stores since November – we are sorry for the delay in bringing you the review, but better late than never! -, which is also on PC, has been part of its initial wave, has good things, but other inexplicable things, or motivated perhaps by being ready on time. It is bad? Is it worth investing in it? Well it depends on several factors.
Cain and Abel with swords
What is Godfall? Well, as the game itself reviews on its console menu screen, it is “the first ARPG of looter-slasher action focused on hand-to-hand combat.” It is a cross between a campaign mode game and a more proper ‘GaaS’ (Service Game). It has elements of one and the other, and forms a hybrid as curious as it is fun and can be improved.
Let’s take the latest God of War, reduce the plot a lot, open its scenarios a little more, and add a mission structure more typical of Bungie’s Destiny than the typical third-person hack ‘n slash, and an RPG progression / customization. The result is Godfall, a title that is basically a 3rd Person hack ‘n slash, but suffers from inexplicable flaws and very good hits.
First, the plot, which is one of the worst in the game: Although it has its touch of classic tragedy, the story of two brothers facing each other in a world of Science Fiction and Fantasy at the same time – Alex Proyas’ Gods of Egypt seems like this – It seems topical and very superficial in that it is a mere excuse to put together the plethora of missions that lie ahead. It may attract attention at first, because of course the initial kinematics is very attractive, but it is diluted and also ends in an anticlimactic way of course.
The 3 Kingdoms
Throughout a campaign mode of about 10 hours – although whoever wishes to continue playing has more ‘endgame’ content when it ends in the form of ‘memories of Orin’ – the plot takes us to several fantastic realms, although not hand in hand, but that the game will give us the option of the route we want to do: Divided into different missions along 3 thematic kingdoms, Earth, Air, Water, we have main missions such as assaulting a watchtower, clashes with Final Bosses, Hunting missions -with certain aftertaste to the Monster Hunter- or unique, always indicating what is the recommended level to face them and what rewards in the form of rare loot you are going to get.
Within these, and although development is guided, there is room to explore and even find different paths. The funny thing is that the exotic materials that we need to improve the equipment – yes, there is also crafting – are found in different veins depending on the kingdom, and perhaps you are short of a particular mineral and have to do one more mission in the kingdom of water, or land.
Déjà Vu early
The main problem with Godfall is that although at the beginning it becomes very entertaining, there comes a time when it begins to repeat itself before your eyes, and you end up realizing that everything is the same again and again. The fact that to move from the area we are forced to repeat missions 2 and 3 times, that is, do the same 2 and 3 times, already indicates that there has not been the proper adjustment here. Or that they have left it so that the Campaign mode does not last half or less …
We also have a free mode in which to explore and search for the loot we need. But we are helped with a ‘detective vision’ in the purest Batman Arkham style. In short, you end up bored visiting the same scenarios, and the missions do not become more than a monotonous process to access perhaps the best of the game at the gameplay level: the Final Bosses.
The standard enemies of each level must be said that they are varied -although they honestly seem discards or alternative versions of the Souls saga from From Software-, and each one has its attacks and ways to defeat them. The problem is that there is not much variety, and after the first few hours you already know how to beat them. This is not particularly bad either, but the redundancy of the game causes you to end up very fed up and sometimes you dedicate yourself to passing them and going directly to the objective of each mission -the game does not penalize you for it, you only lose the reward and the experience points that they were going to give you.
Now you can say, “okay, yes, but leveling is important in this game, right?” Yes, but the general difficulty of Godfall is not particularly high, and boredom looms soon. The real grace is in the Mid-Bosses and especially in the Final Bosses, the latter tremendous and that greatly increase the fun of the proposal: Each one has its patterns, attacks and you have to study them to defeat them, deciding what combination of weapons and items is better.
But if they are counted, Final Bosses as such there are only 6 in the campaign. And the Mid-Bosses, while colorful and fun too, aren’t too many in number and present less of a challenge.
Better in threesome than solo
A success without a doubt is to have integrated a campaign that can be played individually, or with two friends. And this is where Godfall fires his fun, since fighting his way in company and defeating bosses together is an absolute joy, and makes the repetition not so tedious. But we do not understand how Godfall does not have a matchmaking system, but requires that your fellow players be contacts from your friends list on PS.
Knights of the Zodiac
When it comes to recovering life, there are destructible elements of the scene that give you green orbs for this, which you can also obtain from defeated enemies. And to help you against the final bosses, you have in your inventory items in the form of amulets and Life Stones that are recharged with the remaining orbs, and whose healing capacity increases as you find new stones – passing, for example, an item that heals 50% of life to one that heals 65%. You can carry up to three, and the best thing is their immediacy of use because they are mapped in the Square button.
In fact, speaking of looting and farming, be prepared not only to open the chests you see in the game, but to search the corners of the stage and break everything that seems susceptible to breaking. Why? Because they not only give you money, but also exotic materials from the Godfall universe that you need for one of its most epic functions: Building armor.
In Godfall, armor is more than just an aesthetic element: Your character starts with his basic armor, but at one point in the game it is discovered that you can build more, each with an absolutely different look and a finish that changes your character according to the one you wear – styling it to attack faster, making it more of a ‘tanker’ type, etc-, and of course: with different skills.
With a total of 12 – hello, Saint Seiya – each one has its attributes, its characteristics thanks to its own skill tree based on its energy and that you must enhance. At various times in the game you will be given the option to forge them. And what’s even better: if you like the ‘build’ of the character you wear – your choice of weapons and equipped items, when creating a new armor you can equip it from scratch with everything you are wearing, or copy the equipment from one armor to another . Therefore, looting is essential, since they are neither cheap in price nor in materials as you progress.
Although in itself, although it adds another layer to the great customization of the character, deciding on one or the other does not modify the development too much, since they provide more modifiers in hit, damage, healing, etc. in the face of combat, but not too much.
One last note in the equipment section is that there are also more elements that modify the power, damage and other weapons, resistance, etc. Items in the form of rings and charms that you equip and that you will find while exploring the Godfall universe, as part of a quest reward, etc.
The gameplay is simple to learn, but quite fun: Weak attack, strong attack – although the forceful animations that each one has makes one think that both are strong – dash, run, run attack, empowered attack, shield to defend against blows and shots – and parry if you press it at the right time.
The shield can be thrown at the enemies in the purest Captain America style – calm that returns -, but yes, it has a recharge penalty so you do not abuse. And you can make -according to the enemy- a forceful or final blow with R3 if you have connected several blows even if you have taken only half a bar of life.
At first, the weapons are basic, but then you will get other more Infrequent types with different attributes, percentages and own sets of skills -for example there are double swords called Soulbreaker that with several enemies the basic attack does not hurt them, but each hit It serves you to accumulate damage and release it to the enemy when you start to hit him using strong attack. Others will have enhanced attack depending on the nature of the enemy – for example a hammer that does more damage to fire creatures – and will contribute different% to attributes such as charge speed.
Each weapon has its own combo of weak attack, break attack, charge attack holding R2 pressed, and its own weapon techniques called Northern Technique and Southern Technique, which are activated by pressing L2 and then R1 or R2 to for example give it more damage to the blades, or luring in a distant enemy to blast them in melee – ideal for soldiers with energy weapons firing.
When you use them, you will notice a little bit of the haptic magic of the Dualsense triggers unfold when you charge the blow, but I wish the technology of the controller had been used more in this section. The ‘but’ that we put is that there are only 5 types / categories of weapons, whether you want to hit within the melee at a greater or lesser distance, and the shield as the only weapon for long range. Without a doubt, Godfall would have benefited more if he had for example had bows and crossbows to combine with swords and maces, thus being able to cover more in a fight.
This is an ARPG, and therefore there is a section in the form of a board to customize the skills of each character that you want to carry – you can make several. You can focus on pure strength and have devastating weapons, or make quick attack combos and combine them with techniques to suck the life out of the enemy, heal you and make him weaker, or create a double of that enemy to fight alongside you. . You can also for example buy an ability so that while you use a weapon, you load the other, and when you have it loaded, you switch and hit with it with an improved damage for 30 seconds.
Be careful not to change weapons or change equipment if there are enemies nearby, because the in-game settings screen does not stop the game, and it is better to use it when you have cleared an area. In fact, to see the number of times you are going to die, you have a clear indication as to how much they kill you, since you do not have to restart anything, but you start at the same point that you died, and you also keep your loot and the enemies keep the health bar that you gave them when you died.
Bloom Lightning MAX
Visually, although we are talking about a premiere title for the console – and therefore it does not take advantage of everything that PS5 can give of itself – Godfall enters your eyes on its own merit. First, for its spectacular artistic direction, which plays to mix concepts and visual styles from games like Destiny, WoW or Skyrim and films like James Cameron’s Avatar, in a kind of communion between space technology with pure Sword and Witchcraft worlds.
And then because its graphic quality is very remarkable: the shines on the armor, reflections on the scenes, the impressive armor design … The Bloom Lightning is by default at maximum, and although sometimes it causes us to see the enemy more for what it shines that by its design itself, everything is so motley that it is cool. The different aspect of each kingdom makes it stand out even more, because for example the scenarios of the Kingdom of Earth is like traveling through Tolkien’s Middle Earth adding elements here and there of No Man’s Sky. The bad thing is that the scenarios of each kingdom repeat designs too much, and after a few hours they all seem the same.
Like all PS5 titles, Godfall lets you choose between 2 modes: Performance or Resolution, in case you want 1080p at 60 frames or higher resolution at a rate of 30fps. Obviously, in Resolution, the graphic finish is more impressive, but so is the drop in frames, which we don’t understand how they drop below 30 even in areas with no enemies or hardly any effects, simply when you activate it. We recommend that you put it in Performance, because also the dynamics of its gameplay benefits from this, and we hope that the studio will fix this problem.
On a sound level, we certainly found a good job. The sounds of the weapons are forceful, and the voices – in English – do their job, although the protagonist Orin sounds like he is trying to imitate Peter Cullen / Optimus Prime from Transformers without a doubt. Ben Macdougall’s score is certainly interesting, because it manages to have that dimension of conflict between gods, while not forgetting the touches of current ‘trailer music’ for the fighting. A work between electronic and symphonic with some commendable ‘highlights’ with an above-average quality and that also sounds very good outside the game.
With as many hits as misses and / or misses, Godfall can boast of a simple but fun combat system, with possibilities and a huge range in terms of customization, although it falls short in types of weapons. And it is that the same can be applied to the rest of the game, which oscillates between correct elements and other incorrect ones, good things and things to improve or directly fix. Certainly, if you know what you are going for, to fight to the bag, loot and farm through the same scenarios, Godfall may like-even more in multi- and hook you, but it is impossible not to see everything that must be corrected. It could have been a great one, but it has stayed in a great attempt.
- The design of the armor, spectacular, and the artistic direction with that mixture of styles.
- Graphically enters through the eyes
- Hunting missions and that Monster Hunter touch they bring
- Its combat system and all the customization options
- Its multiplayer to 3, a joy going with 2 friends
- The Final Bosses, the most fun …
- … But they are very few and not particularly difficult to overcome
- That the multi has no Matchmaking
- The drop in frames in Resolution mode below 30, inexplicable
- The plot is anecdotal, poorly resolved
- The customization menus do not have a very intuitive navigation
- Only 5 types of weapons, and long-range none other than the shield
- The reiteration (and repetition) of missions
It’s not the latest or the most original, nor does it have the best execution, but it can be fun if you like the genre. Good, but room for improvement.