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Salt and Sanctuary Review for PS4 and PS Vita

Salt and Sanctuary is a 2D platformer reminiscent of the Dark Souls series. The whole feel of the game is mysterious and suspenseful, and while it may lack the refinement in combat that Dark Souls has, it captivates you in the same way, making you feel like you have to keep playing, no matter how many deaths it takes. Once you have created your character and class with an acceptable amount of customization options, the game starts you off in a hijacked ship, your princess has been kidnapped, and it is up to you to rescue her. I’ve always enjoyed this kind of storytelling, rather than giving you lines and lines of dialogue and narrative to get you up to speed with the history of the world, it starts you off as a stranger, like the player themselves, and you uncover mysteries, piece by piece. In terms of gameplay, you are given two weapon loadouts, which you can switch between freely, whether that be a sword, dagger, or whip and crossbow depending on your class. If your loadout has a ranged attack, you generally can not guard or parry, giving you a nice balance of moves at your disposal.

With these games though, it is more about the types of enemies you face, and the sense of accomplishment you get from finally taking down your enemy. and while the game may start with your typical weak melee and ranged attackers, enemies soon come with an array of attacks that will surely make you die. Enemies drop gold for buying items from NPCs and salt, which you use to level up your character. However, each time you die, you will lose a percentage of your gold, and all your salt, and you will have to kill the enemy that killed you to get your salt back.

You will also come across a variety of items along the way, ranging from tools for attacking, to armour. Instead of picking up potions, you are given a designated amount of potions every time you go to a sanctuary depending on your skill level. While the 2D nature of the game and artstyle may not be to be everyone’s fancy, the presentation is very well done, with attention to detail, and for me personally, ensues a sense of nostalgia as it brings the feel of a very well refined 90s flash game.

The settings are dark and grim but at the same time beautiful, with subtle weather effects and a masterful use of lighting. Music is eerie and mysterious, and cuts in and out with expertise, where sometimes you can only hear the lonely taps of your footsteps, and the gentle breeze flowing by, while during Boss battles, music is intense and engaging, putting you right into the “I’ll get you this time” mentality. If you’re looking for a punishing game with RPG elements at a cheap price while waiting for the release date of Dark Souls 3, I recommend taking up this game!

As found on Youtube

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