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Snippet of IGN Game Reviews: Hades, Unique Runs and World-Building

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Listen now to snippet “Hades, Unique Runs and World-Building” from IGN Game Reviews. Death progresses the story of this one-of-a-kind roguelike.
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usual about Haiti's is that supergiant Games uses thes persistent relationships to travel the difficult path of marrying story to game play and in doing so elevates the simple loop of zags escape into something more than the sum of its parts within the world of most rogue lights. Ah, failed run is not typically seen as part of the story, with apologies to rogue legacy. But in Haiti's A death leads to Zag returning home to mockery, usually from Papa Haiti's. This transformed something this fundamental. His death from a video game. Me failure state in the in game world building characters remember your triumphs and failures with a staggering amount of incidental dialogue that made me feel like I was constantly chipping away at new content within Zacharias story, even when I failed. After a while, I no longer fear death. I embraced it as an opportunity to learn and revisit friends back in the House of Haiti's to see if they have something new to say. Losing the fear of death is important because you're going to do a lot of dying. I didn't manage successful escape until Attempt 31 which I hear is roughly the average, I hope. Fortunately, while things with the citizens of the underworld might be complicated, zags, aunts, uncles and cousins up on Olympus are eager to assist his rebellion, thanks in equal part to genuine familial care and wanting to rub Lord Haiti's nose in it if you eventually succeed, their aid comes in the form of Boon's run specific tokens from the gods that grants a godly power ups that modified his eggs abilities, making everyone feel new and unique. Some are smaller, Min Max stat, where the benefits that often feel like a daily vitamin, you're not sure you notice the difference they make as you play, but they stack up over time and make all the behind the scenes numbers larger in your favor. So it's probably a good thing. And, of course, during each run, you also build your relationships with gods of Olympus by offering them tokens of appreciation in the form of nectar and ambrosia that you collect, which also grant you access to their own collection of keepsakes and up the chances of receiving rare epic and heroic variants of their Boone's. With progressively better stats, those familiar with Greek myth are already aware of the fickle nature of the gods every now and then treks through Haiti's present zag with the trial of the gods, a chamber that allows you to select one of two different deities to commune with Poseidon. Maybe your bestie early on in your quest. But choose Dionysus over him in a later trial, and he won't hesitate to make your life a living hell in this particular chamber. Your reward, should you survive, is possessing two different Boone's at once, as opposed to the typical one. Sometimes the gods play nice together. Say, for example, you have the curse of agony from Aires. Ah, boon. That allows you to inflict doom status, which inflicts an additional burst of damage after a brief period of time on an enemy with normal attacks. But if upon clearing another chamber, you find Athena's divine dash, which upgrade your dash moved to deflect incoming attacks, a rare duo Boone will activate, combining the strengths of both in tow one convenient package. In this case, it creates merciful end, which inflicts an enemy hit with a deflected attack with doom status. These combinations of powers are wonderful surprises, and let me tell you that rabbit hole runs deep. There are a ton of different bones and combinations to earn, and you'll still be seeing new ones after dozens of runs. Like any good rogue like Haiti's forces you to make difficult decisions that either complement your current build or throw caution to the wind and attempt a riskier build that could pay off four chambers down the line. If you survive long enough and luck into the boon you're hoping for, all of that feeds into Haiti's impressive replay ability. Once again, I'm blown away by the staggering amount of content within Haiti's. While you may face the same bosses over and over again, they, too will adapt your increase in power level, whether it be in the form of street fighter style assists from siblings, sprouting new heads or fancy new armor. Repeated encounters with bosses felt fresh because of these clever modifications to how they fight. It makes sense within the fiction as well, considering the bosses remember their past failures and successes against you. Each fight is like a rematch between rivals rather than a repeat like me. After a couple of successful escapes, you may find yourself thinking How can I make subsequent attempts harder? Enter the packs of punishment. A challenge board that allows you to activate a number of modifiers to make Haiti's even mawr challenging toggle one on allows you to earn new rewards, making every play through fresh and exciting. You're constantly given incentive to shake up your play style, whether it be through rewarding you with a currency buffer, using weapons you don't normally use, or completing objectives within a scroll known as the faded list of minor prophecies. Get it? The optional objectives, known as prophecies, will eventually come true. It's just a matter of time. I rolled credits on Haiti's at approximately 48 hours, and I'm still met with new storylines, challenges and side stories to tackle and a peek at the achievement list. He's is an epilogue. I've yet to discover how to unlock Verdict. Haiti's is a one of a kind rogue like that sets the bar for creatively, combing wildly different genres together and using their strengths to complement each other in unexpected ways. Its blend of satisfying, twitch based action with countless modifiers to build re playability, dating simulator s character interactions and turning failure into a thing you look forward to as a means of progressing. This story coalesced to an experience that is more than the sum of its parts. Haiti skillfully navigates the millennia. Old baggage of ancient characters reinterpreted through a contemporary lens that feels like they're straight out of some animated Siri's. That's way ahead of its time. I'm now over 50 hours in 70 escape attempts deep, and I can't stop thinking about my next trip to hell. Haiti's is an experience I never want to end. Score nine.