Posted: May 21
I really really really want to like this game, but I can't.
I appreciate the levels being designed around the opening quotes and holding the motif and the fun that combat and platforming can be when done right, but the level design just kills me.
When did difficulty turn from honing timing and/or learning your move-set into coating every thing in ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ spikes? I have never seen so many spikes in a game. I have never felt so helpless and poorly equipped as when wall jumping over instadeath pits and voids that make up 90% of the colorless, lazy, black-block levels and having to dodge super tiny enemies with no air-dash or secondary jump ability after attack or invincibility frames. In a game with a lot of jumping, there is only one air move. And Mario has none but he can at least bounce on enemies. You just slash, lose all momentum, and get the less powerful second jump and then plummet if you try anything. You get molested at every turn, forced to either eternally wall jump in space, or maneuver through bouncing saws while dodging highly liberally used slippery patches that makes you a bouncy ball of perpetual motion and disable wall jump so you can get railroaded into the hardest path. I mean forget exploring or learning how to complexly avoid obstacles using your game knowledge, you're going through every single one because the developer's mouse got stuck painting the tiles in spike and slippery blocks. Don't think. Just jump on the obvious and only path and hope the enemies don't get smart and attack you at the right moment or make you hit a saw.
I also feel no incentive to master the combat system since the button for doing every move, at least on gamepad, is the same one. This sounds good, but there are a ♥♥♥♥-ton of other buttons on this controller or on a keyboard and I'd like to be able to fight without having to alter my movement to perform a certain move to keep a combo up or displace an enemy while super fast monsters with 4 pixel wide hitboxes dance on my soon-to-be-corpse. Additionally the combat actual has no use except in gauntlet rooms and displacing enemies that are basically just walls to make you hit moving saws. Yes it gives you blood for check points, but you can get that just juggling and air-stabbing in quiet areas, which are the areas you'd expect a built in checkpoint to be at. Also also, the enemies don't really fight. The big ones get pummeled and the small ones just throw themselves at you at high speeds.
tl;dr: Bad lazy level design + poor platforming integrated with lackluster combat = wish this was better but it isn't, please avoid unless you like IWBTG because this is easier than that but apparently of the same design paradigm but somehow more repetitive