Posted on: April 20, 2023 Posted by: admin Comments: 0

lost leaf had promise. It looked like a fun action adventure, with a big, colorful world and a mix of cute and scary creatures. Turns out the experience was much scarier than expected…

lost leaf it begins with the player character approaching a valley shrouded in mystery and legend known as Acrea the Lost Valley. Drawn here by the attraction of power, it is that same power that promptly kills the protagonist, after being revived by a mysterious power, it is found that you are now bound to this land. In lost leaf, You’ll explore the open world, fight monsters, and hone your craft as you work your way to freedom while escaping the valley.

The basic premise of lost leaf It holds great promise for an epic adventure filled with combat and discovery, but there are a few issues that you’ll run into as a player very early in the game. Those issues are that fighting monsters gets infinitely more difficult with frequently missing inputs, skill upgrades are locked behind crafting and weapon mastery, and that in my case it was impossible to beat the first boss of the game, as it would respawn infinitely with no way to progress the story.

Stray Blade's Stag boss being defeated
This screenshot is from the third time I defeated the Story Boss…

lost leaf bills itself as an action-adventure title and gives off the look of a The legend of Zelda either Fable title, in practice, though gamers will quickly find that it walks a tightrope between Action-Adventure and a Soulslike game. Combat is generally slower and enemies hit just as hard as you do, especially in the early areas, it’s important not to get surrounded or outnumbered as you’re likely to die quickly.

Where the more casual Action-Adventure approach is taken with death is that you don’t lose resources on death, and strangely, no enemies respawn when you die either. This allows you to keep moving forward with no real punishment other than the loss of time for dying. It feels like lost leaf it’s trying to achieve a level of combat polish, which it’s not technically capable of, causing the whole process to suffer in the end.

Just when you’d expect the combat to be tough enough, there’s the added pain of constant input drop. Each attack should already be deliberately timed to deal damage and allow you to escape an oncoming attack, but if the attack happens late then you’re taking damage, you shouldn’t. This resulted in me suffering a large number of deaths due to factors completely out of my control. For a challenging combat based game, the challenge was patience to endure.

An image of the crafting screen in Stray Blade
To get an upgrade, you need to not only level up, but also craft a weapon, use it to the point where you master it, and then spend the skill point.

What came from repeat kills and replaying parts of the game was the amount of experience you would gain, resulting in more skill points. These can be used to increase your damage dealt, increase your health, or reduce the drain on your stamina bar, to name a few. When you start out, you can gain access to a small collection of upgrades, but each upgrade requires you to craft a new weapon, blueprints for which can be found in various chests around the world, use the weapon until you master it, and then you’ll unlock a new upgrade. to spend a skill point.

By the time I got to the first big boss in the game, I had unlocked and mastered all my available weapons and had 5 skill points to spare. The pacing seemed unbelievably uneven, leading to a feeling of being held back by game mechanics. lost leaf once again I felt like I was trying to create a unique system, that any player after 2 hours could point out the clear flaw. I felt like I was being punished for killing more enemies instead of being rewarded.

The last big flaw with lost leaf and the one that has ultimately led me to be writing a preview today and not a review is that the game was impossible to complete. After exploring the world, leveling up my character, and navigating the oversized world to reach the first of the main bosses, a divine deer, I was able to defeat the beast after a few tries only to have the game not progress. Upon exiting the center of the arena and back, the boss would either respawn with a health bar for you to fight again, or it would just respawn and start running circles around the arena. With no way out of the arena, unfortunately that was where my journey ended…

There are some good ideas that have been put into lost leafthe world itself is dense and varied with something new always around the corner but with an experience system that punishes gameplay and a combat system that just plain punishes. lost leaf you need to work to make sure your foundation is stable and balanced. This lost leaf it has a lot of rust…

lost leaf was previewed on Steam over the course of 6 hours with a copy provided by the publisher; all the screenshots in the preview were taken during these gameplay sessions

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