Fluid and thrilling action platformers are a dime a dozen, but it truly takes a deft hand to meld this familiar genre with a touching and emotional story. Although this preview build only lightly touches on its touted themes of regret and living in the moment, Souno’s Curse seems to be hitting the ground running on atmosphere and aesthetics. So, here are our thoughts on what we played so far!
From the moment you start the game, the first thing you’ll notice is its gorgeous art direction. With hand painted backgrounds, as well as hand drawn/animated characters and enemies, Souno’s Curse makes a fantastic first impression. It feels moody, and mysterious, making you wonder what happened in this world, and where the story will eventually lead us. In a lot of ways it reminds me of Hollow Knight, both in how it handles and its ideologies.
Unfortunately, the game’s controls aren’t as tight as I would have liked, and occasionally the hit/attack boxes of both you and the enemies you’re facing seem a bit off, making it difficult to judge how far away you need to be from an enemy before you’re hit, and where you need to hit them in order to do damage. Being able to use long range magical abilities does help in that regard, but a satisfying and reliable melee attack would go a long way. Luckily, you are able to find statues strewn about each map that will refill your health and magic points when you rest at them, similar to a bonfire in Dark Souls. Though, like in Dark Souls, any enemies you may have dispatched along the way, will respawn.
When it comes to the platforming, that seems to handle well, though it didn’t really challenge us with many difficult or unique layouts. That said, the demo did demonstrate that you could find secret areas with collectibles, as well as some fun death traps to keep you on your toes. Plus, Souno’s Curse is chalk full of your standard fare of floating/moving platforms and spiked floors. Which, when combined with the interesting set of enemies, spiced up the playthrough, and has us excited to see what Kiro Team has in store for us in the final build.
A complete playthrough of the demo, clocked in at less than 30 minutes of game play, and only exhibited a very small portion of the game. Primarily focusing on its combat and platforming. There was some exposition at the very beginning, but not enough to really give you a feel of where the game is headed from a narrative standpoint. You jump over a few spike pits, avoid death traps, and fight enemies, then the demo ends just short of a boss fight. Which is unfortunate because we would have loved to see how the bosses handle within the game. They’re always great at showcasing a game’s mechanics in a very condensed vertical slice.
The portion that we did play however did feel like more of a proof of concept than something that was part of a bigger picture, so it’s difficult to say if what we saw was truly representative of the final product. Nonetheless, it was enough of a taste to have us intrigued!
Souno’s Curse seems to have a ton of potential, and with a few tweaks to enemy/player collisions, as well as the addition of abilities that could make traversal more exciting, we think Kiro Team could have a gem on their hands.
It may have been a short experience, but our time with Souno’s Curse definitely has us excited to see what they have up their sleeves, and we’ll be keeping our eye on it throughout its development! So this is definitely a wishlist for us!
If you’re interested in checking out Souno’s Curse for yourself you can find the demo right now on Steam. And, if you’d like to support Kiro Team in their endeavor, you can check out the Souno’s Curse project on Kickstarter!