Demoniaca: Everlasting Night (Xbox One) Review with stream
2D gothic pixelated visual style is morbidly well done
Most Achievements are easy and can be cheesed (kill X enemies, break X crates, walk X km, etc.)
Tons of item drops and abilities to unlock
The poor jumping ability almost makes the game unplayable
Why are there crates everywhere and why do they have so many hit points and why do they respawn?
NPCs are bizarre and will leave you scratching your head
Demoniaca: Everlasting Night combines the exploratory action of Metroid but implements fighting game mechanics from something like Street Fighter. It is a unique pairing that works for better and worse.
Originally released on PC in 2019, EastAsiaSoft has released this dark and mature game to all current gen consoles. A young girl’s village was burned to the ground as demons attacked. Left for dead, her body absorbed some demon blood giving her new powers. The story sounds like a Marvel superhero origin story but it is definitely dark and full of misery. In fact, one of the opening elements shows the protagonist literally sewing her stomach closed after the attack. The 2D pixel art presentation hits that gothic nail squarely on the head and even the opening main menu screen is dripping with personality.
Demoniaca isn’t a typical Metroid-style game due to the combat and play control. Like a fighting game, each face button is assigned to light/heavy punches/kicks whereas the shoulders and triggers jump, block, and access the inventory/menu screen. In my stream embedded here, I was able to eventually get used to the combo-heavy combat but jumping with the RT jump never felt quite right. It is pretty cool to pull off quarter circle-style attacks to unleash super moves though. In time, the player will have access to a ton of abilities, all of which are logged in the menu screen so they can be referenced at any time, but you might only wind up using a few that seem to work against most enemies.
For a game that is basically one half combat and one half platforming, it is a shame that environmental traversal lacks accuracy. Jumping and wall jumping are a mess at best. When jumping against the wall, the player has no control over the height, range, or speed which makes even basic platforming a chore and borderline unplayable. Also, there are walls of crates that separate most sections of the map and can be destroyed with enough hits. These boxes should be broken with a basic, weak attack. Or better yet, they shouldn’t be there at all. Instead, they must be pummeled like the car bonus stage in Street Fighter II until they break and you are allowed to make progress. Why do these crate barriers have more health than most basic enemies? Making matters worse – they respawn once you leave the area, forcing the player to bust them multiple times.
Taking a note from Castlevania, the player will gain levels by absorbing souls and points can be spent to increase specific stats. This is par for the course but sometimes the screen will go crazy with death metal music, played by an NPC in the bottom corner of the screen. It doesn’t make any sense, is kind of cool, but super odd. Also, NPCs are spread throughout the tower but always speak with strange accents, like a human character that always purrs at the player or a salesman that damns crows. Yeah, there is some strange stuff here.
Demoiaca: Everlast Night deserves some attention for trying something different. There might be several Metroid-style games out there but rarely do they have Street Fighter fighting game combat. If the jumping was better and perhaps the button layout was a little more intuitive then this mature title could have been easily worth a mention. Unfortunately, with the annoyances and flaws, it is something best left to Metroid-super fans or curious players looking for something a little different.
Not As Good As: Trash Quest
For A Combat Fix Play: Breakneck City
Also Try: 6Souls
By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief myGamer.com
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