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[Very first I wanna say something regarding to this game and this review. I was provided by accident (and seemingly did other reviewers and press) a copy that was 2 months old build. I already did play this game and wrote this review and published it with Google Ads and Twitter Ads, when I got an email from the publisher telling me the mistake they’ve made. Also telling they’re working on a patch that should arrive soon/at release. I was forgiving and took off the review and all the ads, because I wanted to give them a good chance with their launch, so I waited the patch to arrive. Sadly I never got any updates to the game, but one that was 21. August, which I think isn’t the update that was to fix all the issues with the game—and believe me, this game got some serious issues. So, therefore this review goes out as it was originally meant to.]
I had to try Decay of Logos because it seemed interesting and the settings promising, with minimal introduction to difficult gameplay. In other words the game is very much like Souls -games, which I haven’t played, but what I have are Nioh, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and Bloodborne, so I’m familiar with the gameplay system. Decay of Logos is said to be very hard game and I’m all in!
Decay of Logos is titled to be story-driven, but in my gameplay there was very little story told. I didn’t manage to kill certain boss to get to the other areas and possibly get little more of the plot. The story tells about young girl Ada, who goes on adventure to find out who destroyed her village. She’s with a mysterious Elk that follows her around. I found one NPC, who told more of the story about the royal family who is responsible for all the destruction.
For my opinion, the game is very little story-driven as far as I managed to play it. The protagonist is silent one, so there was very little talking or telling something about the happenings. I would’ve liked much more story into the beginning to really make player to dive in. The starting situation about Ada I read from the game’s description online and I didn’t get that from the game itself, so that tells a lot about how badly the story is handled.
Gameplay & Controls
It’s rather simple gameplay with heavy and light attacks, healing, using potions, swapping weapons, run, dodge, parry… very basic. This is good thing because the game is HARD and unforgiving, but mostly due to the badly working mechanics. Even a tiny little enemy can kill you or you accidentally drop from too high or step on a bug/glitch. In the beginning I tried to kill every enemy that came to my way, but soon realizing it won’t get me far and making any significant progress would take weeks. I simply ignored them and rather began to do the adventure part of the game. The enemies actually wasn’t hard to beat if dealing just one, they were slow and it was more like turn-based fight than on-going. I let the enemy do its move (I dodged or parry it) and then I hit the enemy one time or few times, but it was safer to hit just once, because trying to hit the attack button didn’t do any good, because of the limited stamina. Enemies usually killed me just one or two hits, which happened too many times for my taste.
So, I adventured and saw places such as underground chamber, area that was bubbling mud and then I met a giant, that I knew I could never beat with this badly designed fighting system and weapons provided. The Elk didn’t do much. I tried to ride with it, but I realized it was much efficient to just run by myself. I had to feed it some berries to “bond” with it, but I didn’t see much of a bonding happening. I could store some items in the Elk’s pouch, though and I think it was all I used it for.
Saving the progress happened with shrines and there was two different types of shrines, one to heal and save and one to heal, save and resting (fixing bad damage), but resting meant, that all the enemies were respawned. The game have automated leveling system and I managed to get few level ups and find new weapons, which all helped, but it was a stretch and everything I gained didn’t felt that rewarding. Adding toppings to the cake, when dying player’s stats are lowered temporarily, making the game even more unplayable, and talking about that more below.
The simplistic graphics works OK, but even that felt too much for the game to handle for some reason (I played with fast SSD and PS4 Pro). The drawing distance was very short and surroundings loaded slowly. The game is very stammering and input lag is very noticeable. The game reacts too slowly compared to my inputs, like a slow computer when you try to type. The overall lagging and input lag was one reason why I died a lot. Jumping from platform to another wasn’t done properly either. It was like there is a bridge I need to jump on, but I have to hit just in the middle, everything else meant dropping down, because Ada “slide” if too near the edges. It gave very untested and unoptimized feeling. Even the camera wasn’t working properly and game with this calibre of hardness, it should work much better. It was all like some Alpha stage (i.e. the first somewhat playable version) of the game.
As much as I got voice acting it was OK. Other sound effects were fine. I try to think something to say about this, but I really can’t say anything good or bad. Everything was basic.
Yes. The main theme in Decay of Logos is the brutal difficulty what it seems to pride, but the fact is that players needs civil rights too. It doesn’t work if just put player in the middle of enemies, make them hard to beat, player dies very easily, everything is lagging, controls untested, environment just put there haphazardly and call it a day. No. Creating extra hard game can be done, but all have to be tested that they actually work and are fair to the player, giving a fair chance to player even beat the damn enemies. For example I wanted to save my progression, but then I suddenly was ambushed on save point (never heard situation). I HAD TO beat them to recover all stats and the fighting area was small and then three different type of enemies (slow and fast) attacked me. It just feels like they were put there for the sake of hardness, but it doesn’t work that way. Even one enemy in larger area is difficult not to mention three in tiny spot with all issues told above. I know there is no sane person who could’ve won that fight. I could go on forever on the list what makes Decay of Logos extremely unfairly and badly working hard game, but it would be childish to do so. You can imagine all kinds of little things that kills you, even if you do something right.
Decay of Logos has all the elements there and it’s just a shame, that they were used this way. I could see where developer was going for, but it doesn’t work like this. I don’t know if the developer team is too small for this kind of game or the game is too ambitious. I wanted to like this, truly I did, but only good part was ignoring enemies and just see the places. I do mention, that developer meant this to be very difficult game, with little hand holding, pushing player to the ruthless world and try to figure out all by yourself. With that, they succeeded, but with all the wrong reasons. Decay of Logos is over-marketed compared what it actually offer. Even the promised fixing update didn’t saw light of the day. I would avoid this game at all cost.
Review copy provided by the publisher