120 people found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
2
Recommended
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 2.9 hrs on record (2.8 hrs at review time)
Posted: Feb 21, 2020 @ 9:26pm

Early Access Review
At a Glance
(Adult) Content
Yes, (F, FxM) sexual content.
Censorship
No. Woot! Woot!
Hours of Gameplay
Three or more hours.
Modding Support?
No.
Patch Required?
Yes, download as Steam DLC.

Guardians of the Ashes is a top-down, real time dungeon crawler.

Gameplay
Before starting a new game, you must choose one of two game modes; in "Adventure" mode, you can "Enjoy the story" and forego grinding. On the other hand, there's "Hell" mode, which features stronger enemies and a need to grind.

You navagate stages and attack foes using the left mouse button. You can attack anywhere you please by holding the "CTRL" key, and dash with the right mouse button. You can switch between available items using the "Q" key, and use them with the "E" key. As you damage enemies, you gain "SP" (or "Skill Points") to use for skills (activated by the "1", "2", and "3" keys). As you battle with Guardians, you also gain Bond Levels, used for unlocking sexual scenes with them. You can equip equipment and items from the in-game menu. To save, you must find "Guardian Statues", which lay scattered accross stages.

Speaking of Guardian Statues, you can also upgrade your Guardians' skills and Nel's base stats. I highly recommend that you upgrade Stamina, because dashing gains experience and helps you get from place to place super fast! Oh, and it works wonders when fighting lots of enemies (to help you not die.)

I found movement to be tedious, and found myself wanting to use the "WASD" keys time and time again.

Story
You play as Nel, and she happens to be the chosen one. As the chosen one she can channel the Guardian Spirits, extensions of a Goddess' will. She's from the "Outside World", and the game takes place in the Forsaken World. The key difference between the two worlds is the presence of "magic", which doesn't exist in the Outside World. Long ago, a Demon Lord wreaked havoc on the universe, but he was sealed away by the Goddess Eva. She created the Forsaken world, to imprison the last of demons and hide them from view. Magic has since be restricted from entering the Outside world, to prevent another "magic war" from occurring.

The game kicks off with Nel following voices in her head, which takes her to a big talkin' cystal. Demons have run rampant, and the Guardian Spirits have lost their host, or original chosen one. Nel enters the crystal, and she finds herself in some splinter of reality. Inside she meets three guardians, Lynn, Kirstie, and Allysse. She is able to become these warriors by channeling them. Using the guardians' help, it's up to Nel to beat back the demon threat which threatens the Forsaken World as we know it.

Visuals
The title menu looks promising, with quality art and a decent interface. The in-game graphics are 3D and look decent. The enviroment is low-poly and pixelated, in a stylish sort of way. However, the characters aren't, which I think results in a conflict of style. The Guardians' animations look comically bad, and often glide around without moving their feet. During dialogue and sexual scenes, characters are hand-drawn.

- The Goods -
The sexual content is awesome. It is well animated, and looks pretty top-notch. Expect female-on-male action.

Verdict
Sure, this game is rough around the edges. Really rough. But you know what, sometimes that's part of the fun. I recommend picking this title up, and reporting any bugs to the developers. This is WIP project, and one with promise.

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