Sin Slayers (PC) Review with Stream
Early game pacing
Lack of music
The idea of an RPG has been bent and shaped differently over the years, but the main consistency of a party in a fantasy world fighting a greater evil always rings true. The developers, Goonswarm, have decided to mix the classic RPG styling with a bit of a Christian overtone, with the main villains being the embodiments of the 7 deadly sins seen in the religion. Each area of the map is controlled by one of the Sins, and it’s your job to find and defeat them. Magic, weapons, and a diverse party is all that keeps the world from falling into darkness.
An odd assortment of different genres, Sin Slayers has elements of many games. It has the “fog of war” aesthetic that is seen in RTS games, where you can’t know where you are going, but only know where you have been, but it also has powers to give you a hint of upcoming goodies or traps just in case. Once the movement ends, the battles begin, and you are in a turn based combat style with different techniques that use up energy or one kind or another. You also build gauges of different kinds by taking damage or causing damage that will let you use other skills to really bring the enemy to their knees, which is all very reminiscent of a JRPG in styling. The way that the whole map is randomized makes it a roguelike, but the dialog choices having weight comes off like a Bioware game in parts. It’s an odd mix, but it totally works in this case, because it has something for everyone.
While it is a mixed bag of different gaming styles, it doesn’t really master any of them. The combat is easy to understand, but right off the bat the balancing is off, since the warrior hits like a truck, making things easy, but the cleric literally has no offensive capability at all, so she ends up doing nothing but healing or ending a turn, which can lead to some nasty healing loops that you can’t escape later down the road. The exploration is fun, with plenty of surprises down every corner, and powers to help you navigate the world but the powers that each character has takes so long to recharge that it barely comes up. It would have been better if powers had a different recharge rate outside of combat, or powers that don’t help in battle recharge faster, something like that would have made things easier.
There is nothing wrong with the graphics here, but there is also nothing really to write home about either. Everything has a vague fantasy vibe with very general depictions of character types and monsters that you would expect. The music is good, but there are so few tracks that you will get annoyed by them faster than you might imagine. The writing is actually pretty damn funny at times, but the voice acting is truly horrible. This is a game of high highs and low lows, so it’s hard to measure at any one given moment how it is. In general, it’s very middle of the road, but it could be made better by updates in a few key areas, so maybe with time it will be better than its current incarnation, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.