Styx: Shards of Darkness - Review

After viewing the trailer and drooling over the gameplay videos I knew this game was a must buy, especially at its price, featuring tons of replay value, a fun co-op mode, which narrows down, to whether you would like to troll someone or help them. It also takes the stealth back to its roots, and takes away the encouragement to kill or assasinate someone. And the game is only improved by its unrepetitive and quirky level design, and different ways to tackle different obstacles.

If anything, it encourages you to be fast, unseen, and merciful; it does this by letting you unlock achievements, and badges that rank how well you do, and depending on how you play about, and which badges you earn, you receive more skill points. It also has an amazing save system, allowing you to save quickly, at anytime, as long you are not in any imminent danger.

However, I wouldn't rely on the checkpoint system to carry you through the game. It has a variety of difficulty modes, and the developers recommend you play on 'Goblin' mode, which disables the combat system all the negative reviews on Steam whine about. Let me first explain how it works: if you get seen and you are about to get hit, you have a last chance quicktime event, where you parry the enemy's attack, staggering them giving you the split-second to choose whether to run, hide or kill.

Now people can b*t*h about the combat system as much as they like, but not only was the goal of the developers to make a stealth game that doesn't revolve around killing everyone in sight, on top of that, you have the fact that you're expecting a midget goblin that weighs around 50kg at most, to fight enemies twice his size and weight?

My only criticisms are that it's a bit hard to find a co-op game, mostly because no one wants to co-op. Why, you ask? It's because there is no reward from the co-op apart from the fun, and the fact that the save-system is not available on co-op makes it more aggravating when you get trolled, especially on those missions where you immediately fail if you get caught. Also, I'd like to see more skills for each skill-tree, and a limit to how many points you can spend on upgrading skills, to encourage the creation of unique builds for singleplayer and co-op.

And maybe even add some PvP? Imagine racing against three other players to who cna steal an artifact the fastest, or trying to steal as many things as possible without getting caught? That'd be fun! I would also love it if the developers did frequent updates to add to the cheesy puns of our little green friend and protagonist, or maybe Antagonist. Some might dislike hom, but that's no reason to not buy the game...

Oh and the visuals! Absolutely beautiful, though in some cases, textures need to be improved, and the lighting can be a bit of pain to adjust.


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Giant Dad