Review | Godfall
While Demon’s Souls, Astro’s Playroom, and Spider-Man: Miles Morales have amazed at the start of the new console lifecycle, others haven’t made quite the same impact. For example, games like The Pathless and The Falconeer aren’t bad games, but they don’t do enough to stand out in the crowd. And unfortunately, Godfall by Counterplay Games finds itself on the outside looking in as well.
Godfall tells a story of betrayal and of men wanting to achieve ultimate power. Unfortunately, it presents itself in a rather lackluster manner. In a nutshell, the main character’s brother betrays him in hopes of gaining Godhood, which will be the ruin of the world of Aperion. This is all explained and shown in a roughly two minute long opening cinematic, and the story doesn’t really grow from there. A couple of bland characters aid the player in their attempt to stop their bad brother. As for said brother, even more bland characters are aiding him. Throughout the journey, the game constantly reminds the player of their goal, becoming increasingly annoying. With nothing else going on, it’s hard to imagine how one could forget it.
On a more positive note, the visuals are fantastic. Everything in the game is incredibly detailed and polished, making for a stunning showcase of the hardware. The armor on the characters and enemies, the particle effects, and especially the environments are all wonderfully executed. Cutscenes also give off a fantastic visual flourish that help the game’s presentation. This is far and away Godfall’s best case at being a legitimate next-gen game.
As far as gameplay goes, Godfall feels like a combination of a bunch of other games. If you toss God of War, Dark Souls, Diablo, Destiny, and Monster Hunter into a blender, Godfall is a realistic version of what might come out. Some of the elements work well, especially the combat and equipment. With plenty of variety, there’s lots of fun weapons and abilities to try out. Longswords, Greatswords, Dual Blades, Polearms, and Warhammers are the primary melee weapons, along with a fun-to-throw shield. Equipment has even more choices, which ultimately affects damage output, health, recovery, and passive abilities. It’s also nice that these primary weapons and equipment can essentially be switched on the fly. There’s also a very user-friendly navigational marker that guides the player by adjusting with their movement, rather than being stationary.
Sadly, any novelties that Godfall has wear off as the game goes on. The missions, environments, and button-mashing combat make it feel like you’re doing the same thing over and over again. This becomes even more painful when you acquire the task at the end of each area to go replay missions to “unlock” the final area and/or boss. Online co-op and difficulty selection might help some with this, but probably won’t help most. Having to go back to the home base after each mission to listen to more uninspired dialogue is also pain inducing.
The reality is that Godfall looks and plays like a next generation game, but it’s such a hollow experience. Honestly, it’s surprising how overwhelmingly average the game is, given that there are several positive aspects to it. Even for diehards of the looter genre, this is a tough one to recommend.
Final Score: 6 out of 10