Death’s Door Review – A Link Between Worlds

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When talks about The door of death, comparisons with THE Legend of Zelda are impossible to avoid, given how much Acid Nerve’s action-adventure game borrows from the Nintendo franchise, specifically this classic. Zelda formula that has persevered so long before Breath of the wild came and completely tore up the rulebook. As big as Breath of the wild was however, there is still a ravenous hunger for this old school Zelda experience among the masses, and The door of death is there to give people what they want. The best part? Not only does he borrow a lot from the Zelda model, but unlike so many other games that try the same, it also does so with great success. As a person who loves games like A link to the past and all the other games like this that it spawned directly or indirectly I’m delighted with the quality The door of death is.

In The door of death, You play as a crow employed by the Reaping Commission, basically working 9 to 5 to harvest the souls of creatures whose time in the living world has ended. When one of your jobs goes awry due to an unforeseen complication, you are compelled to go back there and correct your mistakes. But what begins as a simple mission to harvest the soul that you were originally asked to harvest turns into a journey of far greater proportions, which could very well end up changing the very cycle of life. and death.

“As a person who enjoys games like A link to the past and all the other games like this that it spawned directly or indirectly I’m delighted with the quality The door of death is.”

The story is not exactly in the foreground The door of death, but the narrative bones here are strong. Depending on what you choose to explore at certain points in the game, you may discover more flavor text to flesh out the story, which reveals some pretty interesting details, and although I wouldn’t go so far as to go there. ‘call it “captivating”, I would certainly say that I was pleasantly surprised at how much I was invested in The door of death story. Of course, what helps is that the game is bursting with charm and personality, thanks to witty dialogue and an assortment of quirky characters that it’s impossible not to adore, like a guy who has a pot for the head and aptly named Pot Head. , or a musician who sings and writes songs so bad they are amazing.

Once you’ve started your journey, from there you’re basically playing a Zelda gameplay – from top-down camera to dungeon-based structure, from the focus on puzzles and exploration to keyed metroidvania level design, The door of death wear his Zelda influences on his sleeve.

What strikes The door of death that’s how it instantly feels good to play. The movement, the combat, the way he continues to draw on his ideas, the simplicity with which he conveys so much through pure gameplay – he feels very old-school in his design sensibility, and I want to say this in the best possible way. The pace here is impeccable and you are always constantly switching from one challenge to the next. Puzzles, (most) fights, entire dungeons, and areas last exactly as long as they need to and do all they can with their distinct themes.

What helps, of course, is the excellent level design. The dungeons and the areas leading up to them are all impeccably designed, characterized by a metroidvania-esque design that sees them wrap around in and around them. This means you’re constantly returning to areas you’ve been to before, either because you’re backing up or because the path you’re on naturally leads you back there, and unlock shortcuts to reduce the distances you find yourself on. must go in the future, it is as satisfying as you can imagine. If there’s one thing I can fault the game with in this area, it’s that it doesn’t have a map function. For a game that emphasizes exploration and rewinding in complex and layered environments as much as The door of death in fact, the absence of a map is downright puzzling.

the door of death

“What is striking in The door of death that’s how it instantly feels good to play. The movement, the combat, the way he continues to draw on his ideas, the simplicity with which he conveys so much through pure gameplay, he feels very old-school in his design sensibilities, and I do. say in the best possible way. “

As Zelda Games, The door of death There is also an emphasis on item-based progression, which means you’ll regularly come across locations in the world or in dungeons where you won’t be able to progress until you get a certain item. Something like this never fails to force players to back down and explore, and The door of death is well aware of the fact that he uses this technique over and over again, and does it very well. Beyond that, items like hidden collectibles, optional mini-bosses and combat encounters, and other rewards – such as new weapons – also constantly encourage you to explore every nook and cranny. the environment you are in.

Along with exploration, combat is the other great pillar that holds The door of death at altitude, and that’s the very definition of simple but compelling. Light Attacks, Heavy Attacks, and Ranged / Magical Attacks are pretty much the only thing you have available, meaning that at the base, fight in The door of death is pretty straightforward. But with an impressive amount of variety in the enemies you encounter and the attacks and movement patterns they use, and with the way the game continues to mix and match these types of enemies to constantly keep you on track. your guards, the fight ends up feeling a lot more complex and nuanced than you might imagine.

Archers who like to stand back, enemies who throw magic balls at you and like to teleport, bullies who like to charge you with a shield and a giant hammer, monkey-like enemies who like to jump and throw a boomerang at you. away, and of course, the kick-ass boss battles The door of death continues to introduce new enemy types at a rapid pace, and he continues to find more and more devious ways to use them. Suffice it to say, combat encounters can get pretty tricky at times, especially when the game begins to use environmental hazards, like lasers or moving platforms or crumbling bridges, and tricky arenas to dodge without. paying attention to your surroundings can mean falling to your death.

For the majority, The door of death the difficulty hits the sweet spot – more than a few times I’ve swelled with satisfaction after going through a boss fight or a particularly difficult fight encounter – but there are a few encounters in the game that end up feeling a bit too much frustrating. They feel like they’re trying to force their way towards the challenge rather than reaching that level of challenge with some smart design. In these encounters, the game simply throws too much at you, and the pace abruptly stops as you repeatedly try to get past a frustratingly designed encounter. The problem is all the more aggravating given how perfectly paced the game is elsewhere.

the door of death

The door of death continues to introduce new enemy types at a rapid pace, and he continues to find increasingly devious ways to use them. “

As exploration and combat in The door of death are top notch even with a few trivial issues, one area where the game crucially stumbles is progression. Killing enemies gives you Souls, while you can also harvest large amounts of them by finding Soul Orbs (which is another way the game encourages exploration), which you then spend in the location of the The game’s hub on one of four different trees – but the rewards feel way too grainy. On paper, things like more attack power or greater speed to reduce the time between dodges sound great, especially in light of the way the combat in. The door of death functions, but the results do not seem tangible. On very rare occasions, I felt that the souls I was spending made a noticeable difference in my abilities. Mostly, I was doing better because I was get better at gaming – which is its own kind of reward, of course – but it’s disappointing that the system that exists in the game hasn’t engaged me on a deeper level.

The door of death stumbles, but never so badly that its many pristine strengths are overcome by its flaws. Excellent design, fast mechanics and a lot of charm make it seem like it belongs to the pantheon of Zelda games by any metric except name – and if you’re looking for something to scratch this classic Zelda itchy, there is no better game released on the market this month than The door of death to meet this need.

This game has been tested on Xbox Series X.


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