Game review on Android
Clinton Raethel / Fri 26th May 2017
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OVERVIEW Soul Knight is a fast paced roguelike blast-a-thon that scratches an itch you didn't know you had. From smacking aliens with toilet plungers to shooting trolls with an AK-47, this slick shooter will keep you coming back for more.
STORYLINE "In a time of gun and sword, the magical stone that maintains the balance of the world is stolen by high-tech aliens. The world is hanging on a thin thread. It all depends on you retrieving the magical stone..." That's about all the story we are given, and that's about all the story there is. Don't worry though, we're not here to experience a deep story, we're here for the gameplay.
Gameplay in Soul Knight is fantastic. Set in randomly generated dungeons, you move from room to room clearing enemies and collecting loot. A play through consists of five worlds with five levels each, and each world culminates in a rather tricky boss fight.
You control a single character that starts off with a basic weapon, and can carry two at once, swapping between them whenever needed. The 120+ weapons themselves are glorious, from basic pistols, bows, staffs and rifles up to charge and beam weapons, with some novelty weapons like laser fish thrown in for good measure.
The game features an auto-aim mechanic that does a good job at simplifying things for a mobile device, but don't think for a second that this is a walk in the park. You are constantly dodging attacks and charging enemies while taking cover to let your shield recharge, and with the amount of action on screen at a time (especially in the boss fights) that can get incredibly tricky.
The only real detractor for me is the lack of variety and information. While everything is randomly generated each time there seems to only be a limited pool of resources, meaning that things can get a bit 'samey' after multiple play throughs. Thankfully, the variety in weapons does compensate for that; however there is very little information for the weapons themselves. This turns it into a bit of a trial-and-error affair, and in a game like this I think that's part of the fun.
GRAPHICS With 8-bit pixelated goodness found absolutely everywhere, Soul Knight tugs on those nostalgia strings hard. It certainly doesn't push any boundaries, but it doesn't need to. Dungeons, monsters and effects have enough detail to easily recognise what's going on in the midst of a battle.
AUDIO The pumping soundtrack behind the arcadey sound effects is a mixture of high energy rock and chip tunes. The first level in particular is wickedly catchy, and once again keeps tugging on those nostalgia strings. It can get grating after a while thanks to a short loop time, but never to the point I wanted to turn it off.
VERDICT I'm thoroughly enjoying my time with Soul Knight, more than I thought I would. I'm wanting to pump out a few levels wherever I can not to level up my character and abilities, but simply because it's that much fun running through dungeons shooting stuff. It's also a free game with no pesky ads (unless you want bonus coins) which is rare for mobile games these days. It definitely ticks a lot of boxes for me, and for that, I can't recommend Soul Knight enough.