PolyGod Switch Review by SwitchWatch
Developer: Krafted Games
Publisher: Krafted Games
Release Date: Out Now
Price as of Article: $14.99 USD, £11.99 GBP
The game code provided by Krafted Games for review
You are the faceless one but quite honestly it matters not. Here the seven deities of Polygod will test you until you beg for mercy, either that or you come out the other end to become the holy champion seeing as you are already the legendary, one armed faceless one. I’m not sure how the character is a legend as there isn’t much of a backstory except for a few NPC’s that make vague comments when you speak to them. Let’s just say there wasn’t much here to really draw you in.
This is a low polygon FPS Roguelike which has randomly generated levels and can be played in both single player and either versus or co-op mode, but more on those later. There is also a daily spawned dungeon if you fancy giving that a go. Now I know some of you may be tired of these types of games but if you love games like Binding of Isaac then this goes for something similar in terms of the system used in how the buffs here called Blessings are able to stack. There are seeds that you can jot down so you can load up levels that you like and try them again which is similar to BOI in that regard.
For me losing all of my progress always feels like a kick in the balls, not going to lie about that, but there is something that always keeps me coming back to these types of games. I always ask why that is because it’s not like I am making progress or am I?
You see when people say they don’t make progress in these games, I believe that you are making progress, with each death you learn something new about your skills. With each weapon you pick up and combinations you stack together you learn something new about what works and what doesn’t work so well. Each time your mind is making decisions and picking up on subtle things that will help you in the next run and then the next so on and so forth. Until you get good enough, skilled enough and learning the right strategies to take down the Trial of the Gods.
Let me tell you this is no easy task and you will be pushed to the limit with a boss at the end of each level of which there are 7. Each level when you start again is random along with the enemy’s positions but you get to know the enemies and their patterns after a while. Honestly, I think it took me 2 hours to get passed level 1 and then when you get absolutely smashed on level 2 I felt like breaking my Switch in half. This is where Juan needed a break from the Trial of the Gods. I mean I am not a God just a mere mortal.
In each arena, there are 5 Alters of Worship with each offering you blessings (buffs) in exchange for souls you have collected from your fallen foes. Blessings are stackable and give your gun or you a unique effect but there is a downside. Each time you combine a blessing you will see a downside so you need to make sure you choose the ones suited to your play-style and combine them in a way which doesn’t give you any sort of large disadvantage. A lot of this ends up being trial and error. I preferred Blessings that made my weapon fire quicker or made me move quicker.
There are possibly an almost infinite amount of combinations, no two builds I put together were the same so there is plenty to combos to explore. Each run even though random feels the same such is the lack in variety of the enemies. There is the ability to speed run to the boss if you like but then you will not be sufficiently upgraded to beat it. I liked to go through the level slowly picking off my enemies and making sure I buffed up enough to take down the boss at the end.
Our one-armed hero feels tight to control, you can jump and run and shooting feels substantial and the game feels fun but it really does hurt when you perish and die over and over. Some of you will jump straight back in and others will maybe wait a while to cool off until the next go especially if you have reached quite some way only to perish. In our video review of Dead Cells, Jordan askedif you guys prefer Roguelite or Roguelike and a whopping 87% of you said Roguelite.
For me, there are so many Roguelikes to choose from that the market is quite saturated with them. Each has their own quirk and systems differ slightly but in essence, most of them are similar so you either like this or you don’t. For those that don’t like the thought of starting again then this isn’t really going to change your mind and for those who love this type of genre then this may be for you but I can’t help feeling this could have been a lot better than it is. While the shooting, jumping and running around all feels pretty good it gets rather repetitive too quickly for me.
Bosses are not that fun to fight either, you are basically against a bullet sponge most of the time and you will probably end up dead if your loadout isn’t right.
I will say this, I hated dying and starting again and the game is really difficult, it’s also quite tough to discern what are enemies and which are not at times especially from level two when NPC’s are thrown into the mix. There are different strategies you can use like going above the level and seeing everything from a good vantage point, the problem is you will often fall and lose a bit of your health bar. This is not the best game I have ever played but there is something about it that just kept me coming back. I think I am just a gluten for punishment and don’t like anything getting the better of me although I think this one ultimately will. That’s not to say this game is brilliant as it isn’t but it’s certainly playable for a little while, it just really lacks that special something.
Locally you can play with a friend in co-op which can be quite fun and you can play versus which was a bit of a buggy mess. Whenever a character died it wouldn’t respawn and the game would then crash. The less said about this mode, the better.
The audio here is nothing special, in fact, I would say it’s below average in the sound design department and to be fair it’s not the end of the world. Everything does sound ok and you are not going to kill the game for this. The musical track changes when enemies come into view to let you know you are in a battle and then everything gets very quiet. It becomes quite repetitive. The sound effects can become rather annoying after a few playthroughs.
Visually the game is a low polygon affair and while it looks ok it’s never been a graphical style that I really love. For my tastes, it’s a little too simplistic and while there are some nice rain effects bullet effects and the levels look ok it just never screams impressive to me and these games just feel a tad generic. So it’s one of those where if you are into Indie games you either like this style or you don’t. It does the job is all I can really say and is solid enough. It doesn’t help that I ran into slowdown quite a few times as you wouldn’t think this pushes the Switch but it doesn’t feel very well optimised at times which is a shame.
For 15 bucks or £11,99, you will be kept occupied for a while if you like shooting things over and over again. The addiction comes in from collecting souls so you can upgrade your weapons and buffs and try to make a build which is going to get you deep into the game. You have multiplayer here where you can play split screen and versus as well as the daily challenge but for me, I preferred just playing the main mode. There are more characters to unlock throughout the game also.
Fast Paced Shooter
Lots of Buffs
Versus mode crashes a lot