The latest offering from KYDOS Studios: Soul, now available on the Xbox Indie Games Channel is a very artistic and sometimes extremely difficult dexterity game. Categorizing Soul thusly might actually be a little naive but we must place things into their proper genres until such time as they break free into new and unexplored gameplay territory. Let us take heart in the fact of the to be continued message upon completing Soul, and let us hope for an even greater amount of experimentation from KYDOS with the games sequel.
Have you ever wanted to traverse a duodenum?
Upon starting Soul we are presented with very little in the way of options. In fact we are only allowed three customization choices, Wimp, Normal, and Hardcore. As has been my style of late, I firstly chose to experience Soul at the Hardcore setting. It appears that these settings affect a number of variables in the game, including but not limited to the speed of your soul, the veracity of the soul eaters as well as implementing a timer for each level on the hardcore mode and a limited number of lives. If you have mastered The Impossible Game and are looking for a bit more depth, Hardcore Soul might be the game you are looking for. One of the game's developers, Christophe has professed to beating the game on Hardcore, albeit only once.
Needless to say, after a few minutes at this level I switched over to the lowest setting where I was able to take my time and I began to really enjoy the game. Souls gameplay really emerges on one of its early levels, The Elevators. This is also the level that might bring you close to your frustration threshold.
Never Give Up
Just about every level afterwards introduces a new mechanic, one of my favorites is the limited view level called The Cavern. As I made my way through this cave I wondered if it would be possible to create a type of random cavern generator, complete with functional treasure chests and varied obstacles. I could definitely see myself spending quite a bit of time in those caverns.
Soul shows us there are still numerous gameplay mechanics left for us to explore in 2 dimensions and if you are an indie games developer or perhaps aspire to be one, Soul will probably give you a few ideas for your own game project.