Godfall made me feel a lot of things. Engaged, frustrated. OP, unfinished. Aggressive, in tears (I’ll explain later). There are things to praise as well as many, many legit reasons to be letdown. From the gameplay trailers, this game caught my eye with its fluid and in your face combat, beautiful setting and loot. So much loot. Counterplay Games is made up of people who have worked on a greatest hits of modern gaming– Horizon: Zero Dawn, God of War, Gears of War 5 and Diablo 3, just to name a few. I was in good hands, it seemed…
The combat in Godfall is a lot of fun. With an arsenal composed of longswords, dual blades, warhammers, polearms and more you cut through the hordes ravaging the world. You can combo light and heavy attacks while building up a technique meter to unleash devastating and unique to the weapon class attacks. The shield is ripped straight from God of War, fanning open at the press of a button for either a block or a parry, as is the Archon Fury (Spartan Rage) mode which gives you bonuses depending on the Valorplate you choose. Valorplates are very cool looking sets of armor that provide the player with different skills and stat benefits one can use to tinker and build.
Enemies drop tons of loot for you to min/max to your heart’s desire– enough drops where I experienced stutters in gameplay even on performance mode. There is a large skill tree to spend points in as you level up. Bosses range from cheap and annoying to awesome and memorable. The game is too easy on normal; if you die during a boss fight you spawn right back with full health and max potions to continue chipping away at the enemy right where you left off. Their health stays at wherever you got them down to (making it super easy to cheese bosses). So you never really lose progress. Ranged enemies can be a pain to deal with, as some are ranged attackers, some heal or buff their allies in battle. Lots of them teleport around the battlefield with what seems like little to no cooldown making them difficult to deal with.
While Red Dead Redemption 2 and God of War are the only two games in recent memory I can remember that made me emotional. Godfall never seemed like one of those games, so I didn’t pay attention too much to the narrative. So many codexes. If there’s something I wish games would do more is show, don’t tell. Godfall is all pretty cutscenes followed by “if you want to know more about anything you need to read”. You’re a dude named Orin with an evil brother, Macros, that thinks he’s a God. Some floating rock-face lady wants you to beat him up to save the world. Alright.
Questing has you traveling through different elemental realms to achieve this. I hope you like collecting sigils to progress to the next area, because you’re going to do a lot of that. Sigils can be obtained by completing hunts, repeatable side quests. I found these to be borderline obnoxious, as by later game you have to collect sigils for each realm to continue the main story. This is where I have to talk about the end of the game — WITHOUT SPOILERS — and why I’m glad I didn’t care about the story in it. Upon defeating the end boss and while watching the beautiful cinematic, the game crashed. Having loaded it up quickly I was met by the endgame and the rewards for the fight. I guess I’m happy that I got the loot from it but it half-ass feels like I didn’t finish the game.
Now for the bad news: Games like this should be nowhere near $70. It is obviously rushed out to meet the PS5 launch, especially since I encountered a large amount of bugs.
- Gear upgrades wouldn’t take, meaning it felt useless to do unless I wanted to wait for a patch. Godfall ran great, until they did release a patch that seemed to make it lag even on performance mode.
- The Valorplate bonuses are not great enough to really make you want any of them, apart from looks. I only used two throughout the game, and truly only have my eye on one more only needing components found in the endgame.
- Archons Furies only have two types, shockwave with buffs and summons making them helpful but boring. The build-up to use a technique is just slightly too long that you can’t line it up easily at the end of a combo.
I’ll reiterate that the game crashed during the final cutscene causing me to laugh so hard I cried. There is no matchmaking and at the time of this review I have not tried multiplayer. This is a $40 game that is carried in whole by its exciting combat. We were told there were four realms but there are only three. We were told there would be fun synergies with the Valorplates. We were told they would all look and play differently.
Godfall has potential to be an over the shoulder Diablo/God of War but it’s numerous shortcomings and bland story get in the way. Now we wait to see what Counterplay Games does. Do they pull a Hello Games and rework the things that anger us or do they let it die? 2.5/5 Bibles.