HIGH Branching levels that let the player choose which boss to fight.
LOW The first time against the boss on horseback.
WTF How exactly did I obtain that invincibility power-up!?
As a reviewer, I try to find a happy medium between avoiding genres that don’t generally entertain me while trying to keep an open mind on new entries. But honestly, there are just certain types of games that I am not the ideal reviewer for – roguelikes are one such genre, and this review happens to fall in that category.
In Devil Slayer Raksasi, players take control of a mysterious heroine and set off across six procedurally generated dungeons. The action is seen from a strict overhead perspective, as the player looks straight down onto the action below. Each section offers various evil and processed creatures that must be slain, as well as numerous treasures – coins to buy new weapons, medallions to add protection, and special potions that improve attacks.
Progress will unlock six additional playable heroines. These demon slayers each have unique weapons and attack patterns, so players should be able to soon find one that best fits their playstyle. For me, it was the slayer with a large mace and long-range attack.
At the end of each stage is a powerful foe waiting to challenge the heroine. Upon the first playthrough, players will be forced to fight a specific boss. Once a stage has been completed, branching paths will spring up, offering new boss battles during later runs. Most of these battles are enjoyable and challenging, even on the easiest setting, but I could have done without the default second boss. It’s a demon soldier on horseback with multiple stages of attack and multiple healthbars. It was a frustrating early encounter that I avoided on subsequent attempts.
Balancing out any defeats is a treasure that allows players to retry a level if they die. Owning this softens the blow of permadeath that is so common in the genre — the medallion is the only way to continue a run after death and it’s rare to find, but a welcome inclusion. There are plenty of other things to enjoy as well, like the fabulous art direction, precise controls, and a deep backstory that I barely scratched the surface of. In fact, I’m hard-pressed to find something that Devil Slayer Raksasi does poorly, but I still found myself a little underwhelmed.
Devil Slayer Raksasi wasn’t the game for me, but I still appreciate the quality behind it. If I had to nitpick, it’s that the gameplay (as a whole) is mostly standard for the roguelike genre. Even with the top quality, well-polished content it offers, I don’t see this changing the minds of people who aren’t already fans of these experiences. That said, it’s extremely solid and well-done in all aspects, and those who enjoy a good dungeon run should check it out.
Disclosures: This game is developed by Glasses Cat Games and published by Indienova. It is currently available on PS4, Switch, and PC. This copy of the game was obtained via publisher and reviewed on the Switch. Approximately 7 hours of play were devoted to the single-player mode, and the game was not completed. There are no multiplayer modes.
Parents: According to the ESRB, this game is rated T and contains Blood, Suggestive Themes, and Violence. While no official description is available, there is plenty of blood and violence, but nothing too over-the-top. The suggestive themes are mild – the only thing that comes to mind is one prominent NPC who shows lots of skin.
Colorblind Modes: There are no colorblind modes available.
Deaf & Hard of Hearing Gamers: This game offers subtitles. The subtitles cannot be altered and/or resized. There do not appear to be any noticeable sound cues during gameplay. As such, this game is fully accessible.
Remappable Controls: Certain functions are remappable. Fighting and UI buttons can all be remapped, but movement is tied to the left control stick and cannot be remapped.
When he does find time to play, Brian’s preferred games of choice are platformers, beat-‘em-ups, or a good adventure game.He still enjoys the retro gaming scene, could talk about the Nintendo 64 more than he might like to admit, and misses playing in actual arcades. Brian also gets to pass on his love of gaming, as his oldest son is just now starting to join the fun.
As for that GameBoy - it’s sitting in Brian’s nightstand, waiting patiently for four AA batteries.