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Codex Review RPG Codex Review: Soulash

Darth Roxor

Royal Dongsmith
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Tags: Soulash

Another day, another Codex review of another game you may have never heard about. Or may at least know nothing about. I know I did before reading this in-depth analysis of Soulash by community member Lukaszek.

I'm not exactly an aficionado of roguelikes, so I don't even know what to put here. Instead, I'll just let the text speak for itself.

Eventually you learn the ropes and start exploring. The world is handmade and general directions stay the same during each playthrough. Based on your seed, some settlements might look a bit different or enemies in a given area will change slightly. The same settlement might be a farmer village in one run, while in another you’ll only find burned down houses and orcs there. The next time, you find the buildings intact, but all the villagers have turned into zombies.

While this can make planning a bit harder, it’s nothing truly major. You might find some weak troglodytes with decent spears in one of the caves. You return there in the next life, hoping to loot their weapons, only to find bugs instead. It will hamper your early game if you were set on using spears, but you’ll obtain decent weapons soon enough.

There is one random factor that can easily kill you if you don’t pay attention. Every piece of equipment, be it crafted or generated in the world (on enemies), can be upgraded into an artifact. That scythe-swinging peasant can poke quite a hole in your body when he spawns with a unique spear.

There is no mechanic that will make you stronger on subsequent runs. There are no unlockables, secret powers or anything of that sort. The only difference is that during character creation, the game will show the talents that a given class can learn at the appropriate levels, provided you’ve reached that level first yourself. If anything, I found that obfuscation annoying, although it can be easily fixed if you navigate to your data files. In general, the configs aren’t hidden and the game seems easy to mod.

With the world being same-ish with each run, you become stronger only by not repeating the same mistakes. Though it can be annoying if your mistake was being ambushed by an enemy with some nasty artifact. In general, you’ll learn to run into more newbie-friendly areas. There you’ll establish a base with food, water and a bed, and then proceed to clear out nearby enemies so that your beauty sleep won’t be interrupted. Those sleeping in the woods usually get ambushed.​

Artifact-wielding yokels are definitely a part of my definition of 'fun'. The article also examines the game's crafting system, world-building, general gameplay paradigms and the ecological repercussions of devouring gods responsible for certain aspects of the natural order. Read on here: RPG Codex Review: Soulash
 

Late Bloomer

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Apr 7, 2022
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another day, another indie shovelware trash promoted on codex

Plenty of places have Horizon Forbidden West Reviews.

Soulash is a game I am interested in. The review was worth a read. After reading the review I believe the game is worth keeping on my wishlist and waiting for the next sale. Which for me is the goal of reading a review. To help me make a better informed decision.

Here, perhaps this will make you feel more welcome in a "shovelware trash" game thread. A beautiful triple aaa main character.
enyjlXa.jpg
 

Arthandas

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Apr 21, 2015
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So the dev's idea how to improve the traditional roguelike formula is to add crafting and durability on everything?

images
Usually when I think of roguelikes, I expect each death to make you stronger
You're confusing roguelikes with roguelites. No proper roguelike does this.
 

lukaszek

the determinator
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edgy bait

anyway when I think of 'proper' modern roguelike I think of tome. When I meant stronger I meant in away it did: unblocking some race/class/talent, perhaps saving item before death.
Not like in hades where you constantly upgrade your weapons etc
 

thesheeep

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Item durability ruined my life.

Edit: There are mods that remove item durability.
Item durability is also the reason I wouldn't touch this game.
There's nothing in games I dislike more than absurd mechanics that break the game flow. And a sword that'll break after like 10 uses definitely belongs in that category.

What I wonder, though, is what such a mod would do with the game balance.
After all, it seems pretty certain that the game was designed around that durability nonsense and removing it would remove a big portion of the "challenge".
 

lukaszek

the determinator
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Item durability ruined my life.

Edit: There are mods that remove item durability.
Item durability is also the reason I wouldn't touch this game.
There's nothing in games I dislike more than absurd mechanics that break the game flow. And a sword that'll break after like 10 uses definitely belongs in that category.

What I wonder, though, is what such a mod would do with the game balance.
After all, it seems pretty certain that the game was designed around that durability nonsense and removing it would remove a big portion of the "challenge".

There could also be a middle ground option, where repaired equipment doesnt lose max durability.
If I were to predict the grand scheme, design of the system it was probably to gradually learn how to craft higher tier weapon and use it exclusively(as in keep replacing). However as it stands you instead find upper tier weapon, switch to it, break it, dismantle it, dont learn the recipe, come back to lower tier. Even with very high inteligence. Perhaps dwarf could pull it of though.

Removing max durability penalty would make crafting optional since you could just keep repairing that cool artifact you found instead. I think it would be better but its not like I tried it
 

Theodora

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anyway when I think of 'proper' modern roguelike I think of tome. When I meant stronger I meant in away it did: unblocking some race/class/talent, perhaps saving item before death.
Not like in hades where you constantly upgrade your weapons etc

The Berlin Interpretation was written by a bunch of dumb nerds anyway, it has no real authority and a good game isn't defined by strict coherence to formalism.

Great review, felt very honest and balanced.
 

Arthandas

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Apr 21, 2015
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The Berlin Interpretation was written by a bunch of dumb nerds
"Dumb nerds" like that invented the genre.
it has no real authority
Neither does Codex, yet you still come here if you want to talk seriously about RPGs. Also, no authority doesn't mean it's inaccurate.
good game isn't defined by strict coherence to formalism.
No, but its genre is.

"Roguelike" - it's in the fucking name, "a game like Rogue". Only zoomers and mainstream "journalists" who ignore the past 4 decades of this genre's history slap the term "roguelike" on everything from Slay the Spire to Isaac or Hades, at which point it loses it's meaning since it can be applied to half the indie games out there...
 

Shin

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and I just wanted to add that I am a fan of people who are a fan of Lukas and his reviews.
 

infidel

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Strap Yourselves In
lukaszek said:
Contrary to the rest of the game, I was expected to drop a special item on the ground to discover a new interaction button.
Custom interactions are always fun to implement. When you're sorta done with all the common interaction pathways, implement, test, explain, add tutorials and all that and then decide to add some shnorkel that has to be used in a specific way in a specific place, you might suddenly notice that you're screwed - the UI is set and might not allow for any extensibility, unless you just open a new window up in front of the player's face or something. Then it's time for inventing kludges because you can't justify spending too much dev time on a single specialized shnorkel, can you?
 

lukaszek

the determinator
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lukaszek said:
Contrary to the rest of the game, I was expected to drop a special item on the ground to discover a new interaction button.
Custom interactions are always fun to implement. When you're sorta done with all the common interaction pathways, implement, test, explain, add tutorials and all that and then decide to add some shnorkel that has to be used in a specific way in a specific place, you might suddenly notice that you're screwed - the UI is set and might not allow for any extensibility, unless you just open a new window up in front of the player's face or something. Then it's time for inventing kludges because you can't justify spending too much dev time on a single specialized shnorkel, can you?
it would be expected if you were to hold that item in inventory or wear it. Having to drop it on the ground is new/odd/unexpected requirement
 

Viata

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Only zoomers and mainstream "journalists" who ignore the past 4 decades of this genre's history slap the term "roguelike" on everything from Slay the Spire to Isaac or Hades, at which point it loses it's meaning since it can be applied to half the indie games out there...
Just like with metroidvania, indie games are slapped whatever genre it helps the game sells.
 

Jasede

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Insert Title Here RPG Wokedex Codex Year of the Donut I'm very into cock and ball torture
Sounds interesting. Reminds me of ancient Omega.
 

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