For many Lords of The Fallen will be seen as an easy Dark Souls clone and cash in but if you can get past that early impression Lords of The Fallen is a worthy addition to the action RPG genre. It is a more accessible and straight forward game than its inspiration but at the same time is often a more fun story with engrossing gameplay. This is My Scrambled Thoughts on Lords of The Fallen.
It’s hard to talk about Lords of The Fallen without referring to the Demon Souls, Bloodborne, or Dark Souls games so if you haven’t experienced those then here is a quick overview of those types of games: The Dark Souls (Souls) games are RPGs where you can customise a characters look, play style, and level up different classes by gaining souls (experience) and by looting equipment from chests and enemies. They are also action games where combat is in real-time and blocking and moving can be as important as you characters health.
The Soul games are notoriously hard but normally not in an unfair way but where you need to learn the maps and enemies through mostly being killed and learning how to proceed. If you die you drop all your unspent experience which can be retrieved by returning to your death spot but is lost if you die again. Save points are scattered throughout the world and whether to use one is a decision you make because it affects various factors such as enemy respawns. Finally one of the most important parts of a Souls game is how you feel part of a breathing world. Places you see in the distance you can and will likely travel to later on and areas shouldn’t feature many if any load times. This means back tracking isn’t a pain and helps with immersion.
Lords of The Fallen features all, if not all the above but while Souls feels like a grind, Lords of the Fallen doesn’t as much. It really matters which class you choose as while there is nine sub classes in total, only three are main classes. The three main classes are Warrior, Cleric, and Rogue while if you mess with the class magic you can become a Paladin or even a Ranger. The class choice is basically the game difficulty where warrior is easy, Cleric medium, and Rogue is hard mode.
I played as a Rogue first but I got stuck where my only choice was to grind experience. So I started again with a Warrior and while I had to level up for a bit, the whole progression was smoother and enjoyable. This is one of the problems with Lords of The Fallen and even more so in Souls is that, yes you can play and get far with skill but if you aren’t high enough level which requires some sort of grinding or got the correct gear it can only get you so far if enemies can kill you with a simple touch. However because of Lords of The Fallen length, running around killing enemies for experience is kept to a minimum.
The story of Lords of The Fallen is pretty straightforward compared to Souls – a god named Adyr is defeated by three heroes, a Rogue, Cleric, and a Warrior, known as the Judges. You take on the role of Harkyn, a convicted criminal who is tasked with stopping the invasion by Adyr’s demonic Rhogar Lords and their forces. It’s a simple story but offers three different endings and enough incentive to go through the game at least three times.
The main differentiation of Lords of The Fallen to a Souls game is that there is no online component so no invasions, co-op, or messages in the game world. No character customisation so everyone is a male Harkyn but these aren’t really missed much. The other main difference is the way saves work. In Dark Souls bonfires are safe and save spots where when used all enemies respawn, health potions are refilled, and experience can be spent. In Lords of The Fallen enemies only respawn when you die and enter a load screen. Experience multiplies the more enemies you kill so it becomes a risk reward of should I save my experience now at this save spot or should I carry on for better rewards. At one point I lost a hundred thousand experience because of this, I could have used an item to instantly restore my experience but thought I could return to my death spot with no problem which I failed spectacularly. Also some save spots only refill a certain amount of potions in Lords of The Fallen.
Lords of The Fallen can be completed quicker than Dark Souls but this means you are more likely to play it again in its new game plus modes. Shorter games aren’t always bad if it means they have more replayability. The game also feels more purer than many Souls games of late and has an exciting future ahead of it. While Dark Souls is stagnating like Call of Duty and hasn’t changed from its first game, where only Bloodborne offered something new. Lords of The Fallen offers more chance and opportunities for further development.
Overall Lords of The Fallen is a Dark Souls imitator but this plays into its favour as a more pure and fresher experience. It is also shorter and less challenging but means you always are making process and more likely to replay again. If you can get the game on a sale then Lords of The Fallen is defiantly worth buying and playing.
System: PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.
Developer: Deck13 Interactive and CI Games.
Publisher: CI Games.
Note: Click an image to see a larger version. You can see my other reviews on my Review page.