I think I might be done with Lies of P (Neowiz Games/Round8 Studio). I made it through the third chapter and beat the end boss in my first try. Talking to people in the RKG Discord, this was very lucky on my part. One guy said maybe I was just that good? Nope. That was definietly not the case.
Here’s the thing. I can’t parry. I have made it through all the From games without doing it. Not the parry in the Souls games (or Elden Ring). Not the riposte/visceral in Bloodborne. Certainly not the deflect in Sekiro. People compare this game to BB, but I feel like the combat is more Sekiro-lite. The game wants you to deflect all day long, but the window is still an anathema to me. I know it’s different for each enemy type, which is fine. The issue is on the bosses.
I will be talking about the bosses and the areas is the first five chapters. I know there are at least 10, so we’re talking early-to-mid game. I gave my quick impressions in my last post about the game, and I will go more in-depth now. I mentioned in that post that I breezed through the first three chapter. The first chapter was the best, lookswise and just in terms of–well, everything. Because it was fresh and new. By the time I got to the fourth chapter, I was already weary of the game. Mob enemies that can’t always be separated–and that fall from places you can’t see.
Side note: This is something that the Niohs do all the time. Enemies you can’t see. FromSoft, for all their love of mobs, very rarely throw unseen enemies at you. When they do, it’s just one, and it’s not surrounded by a mob. Except in the second game. They had some unfair placement of enemies in that game.
I think the fact that I was able to skate through the first three chapters without parrying reliably made me get a swelled head. The first boss was hard as hell, but after that I breezed through until the chapter four boss. Before we get to that boss, though, let’s talk about the area.
It’s a chapel, which is remeniscent of Anor Londo. But the initial area is a broke-down village, much like the Forbidden Woods of Bloodborne. But, not quite. There is one type of enemy that I can’t stand–it’s the one who has a long weapon and just thrusts it into you repeatedly. There’s a chimney sweep in the second chapter who does it and villagers with pitchforks who do it as well. If they catch you with the first poke, they will skewer you and take half your health. Or push you off a ledge.
I am so bored of the enemies already, and I am not even halfway done with the game. This was something else Zoe mentioned in her review–the enemies are so uninspired. You know how I have taken care of mini-bosses? By throwing things at them. A lot of things. The throwables are so powerful–and at least they are as good for me as they are for the enemies. I will get to this more later on.
In the middle of the fourth chapter, I hit the cathedral. And the game got so. much. worse. I have mentioned that they wear their FromSoft influences on their sleeves (and it’s laughable that they said they weren’t thinking of the From games as they developed this one), and it’s out in full force for this area. You have to go up in the rafters and traverse them. That’s not bad in and of itself, but there are enemies blocking your way. That also isn’t too terrible except there are these special enemies who reach into their gut, pull out decay, and throw it at you. Decay erodes your weapon and has a meter. If it maxes out, then your weapon degrades to almost broken. If you don’t fix it within a few seconds, it’ll break and be nearly useless.
So, if you’re following along, you have to go across these rafters while one enemy is attacking you and another is throwing decay at you. Oh, and one more thing. There are windmill blades that you have to avoid as you hop from one rafter to another. And they can knock you down. Into a pit of decay. And you can’t turn your camera to see exactly where the blades end because they’re too close to the ceiling.
Do you understand why someone with no depth-perception, terrible reflexes, and no sense of space might have difficulties with this? I died to this area roughly twenty times. Ok, that’s probably a bit of an exaggeration. Well, no. I don’t think it actually is. You see, if you fall down to the decay, it’s basically an insta-death. At least with the health I had. I really thought about quitting, but I grimly pushed on. And finally got through. Only to be confronted with sigh boulders running down the corridor and into a chute. Which, by the way, is like Sen’s Fortress–the area before Anor Londo.
So in this bit alone, we have the decay pit and windmills of Earthen Peak in Dark Souls II. In that game, it was poison, but same difference. And you could use fire to burn the rot, which is the same here. We have the boulders of Sen’s Fortress in the OG game, and the rafters of Anor Londo from the same game.
Then, after much agitation…by the way, the mini-bosses are boring as fuck. They don’t add anything to the game and as Zoe said in the video I included above, it feels as if they were added just to pad out the areas. They have a lot of health and very few attacks. Doesn’t mean I can block them, though.
I have two ways of dealing with the mini-bosses. Neither are cricket, but I don’t care. One is to get them to their leash limit and then as they go back from whence they came, whack them once in the booty I have done this more times than I care to admit because I can’t be assed to fight them over and over and over again. The other is to throw everything I can throw at them. Then get in the lat one or two hits. Both are boring as fuck, basically cheating, and I have no guilt about it.
There are interesting NPCs. I will give the game that. And you have to decide if you want to help them or not, and if you want to tell them about Hotel Krat (the hub area, and the only safe place) or not. Geppetto made it quite clear that if you tell the wrong person about the Hotel, it could be the end to everyone there. He’s upstairs next to his P-Organ (yes, really) machine.
Another tihng Zoe mentioned that I really agree with is that there are just too many systems in this game. I know that From loves all their systems, too, but they don’t chuck twenty of them in the same game. In addition, I think FromSoft goes overboard with it as well. You don’t need five stats of various strength AND five different upgrade paths AND human/hollow states, AND day/night difefrences, and, and, and.
In Lies of P, you have the regular leveling up using Ergo (souls) (that you can only do at Hotel Krat). leveling up of your P-Organs (that’s just enhancing different skills using quartz), upgrading weapons (with different mats for different levels and diffreent category of weapons), boss souls make weapons/talismen–er, rings, er…ah…um…amulets. They have amulets. There are all the status effects, so there are ampules for each. You can change the handles on the weapons, and you can use cranks to up the strength, dex, or magic of said handle. That’s not the names in this game, but I can’t be assed to remember them.
I was going to talk about the fourth chapter boss and the first part of chapter five, but I’ve gone on as always. I’ll end this here and pick it back up tomorrow.