I’m not a big Metroidvanias player, the ones I have on PS4 are few and I’ve only finished one (unless you consider Blaster Master Zero a Metroidvanias) and as for PC I don’t really know, because I have many games on Steam I lost the account.

The Ladybug development team has been working with the genre until recently, with a Metroidvania (Shin Megami Tensei Synchronicity Prologue) that’s a better promotional game than it ever should be.

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But what really caught the company in the eyes of the general public was the success of Touhou: Luna Nights (PC, Switch, and Xbox One) in 2019. And when it was revealed that they were developing a Metroidvania based on Lodoss War (a serial , which I have a great affection for… Although I’ve only seen the OVAs from the early 90’s and played a small MMO), well, they piqued my interest.

And just like Touhou’s game, it was released in Early Access first, with levels added over time. And in late March, the game finally arrived in full.

Is Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth worth your money?

Lost in the maze of memories

The player plays as Deedlit, the elf who accompanies the group on a perplexing journey in the Lodoss War OVAs. She wakes up in a strange place, not knowing how she got there or how to find her friends again.

As she explores, she encounters characters familiar to fans of the series, but her cryptic dialogue and odd behavior raise more questions than answers.

The only constant that doesn’t act weird is the sorceress Karla, who obviously tries to pick up beef because that’s all the character does. The game’s plot falls victim to one thing that becomes apparent when analyzing the game as a whole: the game has been rushed. Not that things are missing, bugs that break the game, quite the opposite.

The point is that everything gives the impression that the producers had plans that had to be compromised by the restrictions imposed by COVID-19.

Explore, evolve and evolve

Deedlit in Wonder Maze

At its core, Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth is a metroidvania, so expect things that are common to the genre. Defeat enemies, level up, collect weapons, discover secrets and acquire skills that will allow you to overcome certain routes or reach previously unreachable parts. These are conventions already established in Symphony of the Night, and the game here executes them competently.

In moments of the game it is necessary to solve “puzzles”, which usually involve using a bow and arrow to hit mechanisms that will help to go through certain sections. Finding the solution is not difficult, it is a matter involving trial, error and a little analysis of the scenario.

As a difference, the game uses a variation of the system seen in SMT Synchronicity, where enemy attacks can be absorbed depending on the aura you are equipped with. There are two auras, one of wind and one of fire.

The wind aura allows Deedlit to levitate as long as there is ground within a certain distance, and the fire aura allows the elf to walk through lava without taking damage, but more importantly, switching between the two auras is essential for survival, since some enemies are attacked by these elements, and when equipped with the aura of the element in question, Deedlit absorbs the attack and restores MP.

There are also barriers that can only be overcome with the given aura (and can be used to charge MP, a constant in the game), and in the end this system of changing colors to absorb the attack is very reminiscent of the classic Ikaruga (more platforms than I can count) and brings a subtle element of strategy and reflexes into play.

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These auras have levels from 1 to 3 that determine the strength of your attacks, and the level of the auras is increased by killing enemies with the opposite aura, enemies release cubes that increase a bar (top center of the screen) . , the level will drop as you take damage, and when the gauge is at level 3, your HP will gradually begin to recover.

The difficulty of the game is progressive but fair. It may take a while at first to understand how boss fights work, but once you learn boss attack patterns, it becomes easier. Of course, later fights like Pirotess (second fight against her) and Emperor Beld are more challenging.

But at the end of the day, the game is also shorter than it could have been for the same reason the game’s script feels rushed. Not that the length of the game is a bad thing, but as I pointed out in the script section, the game could have done better if the global pandemic hadn’t happened.

In terms of performance, the game runs on any potato, is super light, and even accepts generic USB controls, unlike games that force you to have an Xbox or Playstation joypad in order to play them on PC.

“Audiovisual” award

Deedlit in Wonder Maze

Graphically, Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth is simple, but not minimalistic. I often don’t know if it’s due to lack of resources, but a lot of indie developers make game sprites in a minimalist way and claim they’re retro.

I totally disagree, but that’s a topic for another day. What I mean by that is that the game’s sprites are simple but don’t fall into minimalism. In fact, both the deedlit, the NPCs and the common enemies/humanoid bosses are made with great detail and their animations are extremely well done.

And the big bosses stand out because of their enormous size and the details used, which are not overly noticeable, but because of the difference in size between Deedlit and Narse (The Black Dragon we face).

The scenarios are equally simple and detailed. While we have textures and a black background in the construction part of the level design, the backgrounds are detailed enough to stand out. It’s still a labyrinthine castle with several different areas that are succinctly connected.

The game has a very good soundtrack. They might not be the songs of the year, but they’re extremely competent and set the tone of danger, exploration, and adventure for the game. And at least one of them will stick in your head after the game. I guarantee.

Conclusion

Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth doesn’t reinvent the wheel and doesn’t have to. Sticking to sharp gameplay, gorgeous graphics, and a competent score is the kind of game I recommend without a second thought.

The game is available for PC and can be purchased on Steam.

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