We had the chance to try a pre-alpha version, where we’ve mostly shown all of the major gameplay features we’re going to find in the final version. First of all, we have been shown that, unlike a classic action game, the goal is not to kill as many enemies as poss
ible, but to survive as long as possible within a dungeon. The areas inside the dungeon will be randomly generated for each of our deaths (and we will die often, guaranteed), making our exploration unique and different from
the previous one.By looking at the map, we will have to try to reach certain points of interest, to unlock new abilities to access previously impossible areas to go beyond, or to gather perks with which to step up. These will allow us to have bonuses, but in return we will always have to sacrifice something. The “Assassin” bonus will give us 15% more chance of inflict critical blows, as long as we give up 20% of our lives. The enemies the
mselves do not have spawn zones, they may appear more or less numerous depending on various factors we will not control, such as past time and areas explored in life. Sometimes we may experience a real ambush in which we will be attacked by waves of enemies much more than usual and this will make a real business survive.
Voltage to the stars
The best way to enjoy the soundtrack of the game is for sure with a couple of headphones on it. There will be no epic soundtracks to convey the experience, but a steady trace of background that can dramatically increase tension. The culmination is reached when a
bell sound invades the area: it means we are in the middle of an ambush.
Gameplay side, the game may fall into a potentially definable Action-Horror genre, which seemed to us to be extremely functional throughout the trial.
To defend ourselves, we will have a regenerable shield available, but once every shot is over it will come to life; the only way to recover it is to find certain objects during our explorations which, however, were really rare to meet.
During our adventure, it will be important to collect crystals, with which we will be able to grow stronger everywhere in the hub; each crystal spent will increase the cost for all other power-ups, and any crystal we will not spend before going back to action will be lost forever.
A mix of Horror and Action
Of course we will not be helpless: we can make different combos with our swords in any direction, even in mid-air; we will have a quick dodge and a giant pistol, whose bullets have a very limited spin and, as for life, will be very difficult to recover.
We will therefore have to consider using a pinch of strategy during the game, without ending the gameplay in a monotonous button smashing: it will be very important to analyze and memorize the movements of the enemies and to understand in which position it is best to take refuge.
The demo version we tested ended with a giant boss because, using the words of the developers themselves, “it would not be a Thunder Lotus game without gigantic bosses!”.
There have been no references to history, but we know that it will be treated with lots of detail, thanks to the presence of different finishes depending on the choices made.
The only doubt is about the variety of enemies, which for the moment did not seem very wide: we hope that this aspect will be resolved in the full game and that, as in this version, we will not resort to mere reshaping of the existing ones.