Published on March 8th, 2020 | by Zorbz
REVIEW – Darksiders: Genesis
It’s not often a game series completely overhauls the look of their game to a different viewstyle, but with Darksiders Genesis, that’s exactly what has happened. The 4th entry into the series goes from a 3rd person action adventure to a top down Diablo style…action game. Does it work, guess you’ll have to keep reading to find out.
Concept: Genesis features the last horseman to receive their own game ‘Strife’ and acts as a prequel to the three previous entries in the series. This works out great because although the first three games are great in my opinion, they weren’t massive blockbusters that sold a bajillions of copies, so having a fresh story where you can just jump right in works out well for newcomers. The story revolves around Strife and War hunting down Lucifer who is scheming to upset the balance between good and evil, a plot that all the games seem to follow, however Strife brings some comedic elements to the story which is actually quite refreshing, especially when it is at the expense of his brother in arms War.
Graphics: For fans of the original entries, you might be shocked at the new perspective, but you will quickly feel like you’re back in the universe as all the environments, enemies, armour etc are all consistent with the previous games. I actually love this top down view as you can soak up much more of the world around you as you traverse each map. I say each map as the game sets up your missions in separate levels that are all quite distinct from one another, instead of a large open world. I actually prefer this as it allows for more variety in locations and designs which breaks up the monotony of seeing the same things over and over in a lot of open world titles. You go from dungeons filled with lava, to frozen wastelands to ethereal realms with crazy geometry. It’s a really pretty game with it’s amazing art-style and whilst it won’t push the boundaries visually, what’s here is really well detailed and surprisingly quite colourful.
Gameplay: My main concern as someone who loves the previous entries was how different will this feel to the previous games? Well to my surprise it actually translates quite well with tons of moves to pull off as you battle hordes of demons and i’m happy to say that there is still puzzles and platforming through each level with a ton of hidden secrets to uncover. These secrets generally consist of souls that you can use in the hub world to upgrade, learn new moves and buy items to use in battle, and much like an RPG you have a skill tree and gain XP as you kill enemies along the way.
The action from a top down view gives you more moves to tackle enemies coming from all directions and with the ability in single player to swap between Strife who is a more long range character to War who is more melee based, it adds a cool option to tackle battles the way you’re more comfortable with. In co-op mode, it’s pretty self explanatory with one character using Strife and the other using War, however you can swap if you prefer during levels.
Single player is a nice smooth experience from my playthrough on the PS4 Pro which is refreshing as Darksiders 3 was extremely buggy, hindering the experience at times. The same can’t be said for co-op though as you will immediately notice quite significant slow down. I can’t speak to whether this is different when playing on Xbox One X, but if you’re going for a co-op session you’re better off playing Online co-op as opposed to couch co-op.
Sound: Voice acting is a strong point for this entry as both Strife and War are acted well and are vastly different to each other in not just voice alone, but their personality as a whole. The music is epic, atmospheric, orchestral and and fits each location perfectly, especially when in battle with gunshots going off from Strife and the giant swings of War’s massive sword smashing through enemies. I can’t think of anything I would fault in the audio department and that’s really refreshing.
Awesomeness: The main thing that stood out to me, apart from the 15+ hour campaign was the wealth of secrets and upgrades to earn through each level. Once obtaining a map in each level you can see where the secrets are, however the map is vague and doesn’t track your movement, which at first was frustrating but it always leaves some mystery to finding said ‘secrets’ so it does it’s job. I love earning new abilities that allow me to jump back into previous levels to completely clear the map and earn as much XP and souls as I can. It really is a game for people like myself who have a bit of OCD when it comes to trying to collect everything, but if that’s not for you, don’t worry because you can easily progress through the game without clearing every inch.
Now I shouldn’t say the word Easy as Darksiders Genesis is actually quite tough and really gets you in the later levels to tackle enemies tactically and not just aimlessly which is another refreshing touch, but all the titles have been like that so i wouldn’t expect any less.
Final Word: I was pleasantly surprised when I felt how Darksiders Genesis played and I was immediately hooked in the gameplay loop, maybe even a bit too much with me going back to collect and buff my characters religiously. It felt very similar to the previous entries with enough to distinguish itself from the other titles and not just in the new view-style but the mash up of two distinct characters to play through levels with. If you’re never played a Darksiders game I would highly recommend this and to people who are on the fence that are weary of the new play-style, don’t fear, this is still a Darksiders game through and through and you will get hooked i’m sure in the atmosphere, gameplay and mythos just as I did.
Out of 5 Bugs!