The indie Soulslike Metroidvania has reached one million players. Here’s why you should join them in the twisted Cvstodia lands of Blasphemous.
While constant innovation has been a part of the games industry for decades, some styles have proven to be simply timeless. Unique independent sideshift Blasphemous is proof of it. The game recently celebrated its millionth sold copy, an important milestone for a game from a small Spanish studio.
Developed by The Game Kitchen and published by Team17, Blasphemous It was designed as a game similar to Metroidvania. It was released in 2019 and has since grown in popularity, winning awards such as “Best Spanish Development” and “Indie Game of the Year” at the 2019 Titanium Awards, where it was also nominated for “Best Art.” the confirmed developers that Blasphemous had reached the million copies milestone on Twitter, joining the celebration. The game is available on all major platforms, which certainly helped it reach such a wide audience.
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Blasphemous is set in Cvstodia, a land of extreme religion, superstition, and worship that is sanctified by an otherworldly force called “The Miracle.” This power will sometimes infuse blessings or curses upon its inhabitants, turning them into twisted and monstrous physical manifestations of sin. Players travel through this twisted land as The Penitent, the sole survivor of the Brotherhood of Silent Pain (so named because its members have agreed to a pact of silence).
The game, with all its gruesome violence and obvious Catholic influences and iconography, feels like a 2D Soulslike. It certainly has a dark and depressing history surrounding Cvstodia and its inhabitants. It also has the difficulty so frequently encountered in the genre, as players have to properly time their parries to defeat certain enemies and bosses that will normally require more than one attempt to defeat them. Even the Penitent seems to make himself suffer during his pilgrimage; on the other hand, he makes his enemies suffer even more with his bloody execution movements.
The game has also been supported and regularly updated since its launch. In the summer of 2020, the DLC for the game called The turmoil of dawn. This adds a host of new features and mechanics, such as New Game +, an optional “three penances” system that alters the game, new stories, NPCs, bosses, side quests, areas, items, counters, and run animations. Plus, there’s even a cute little dog that you can pet.
The latest game update, Conflict and ruin, released in mid-February and involves a crossover with another Metroidvania, Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. The main character of that game, Miram, is trapped in Cvstodia and must return to his own world with the help of Penitent One by participating in a series of platforming challenges. However, it should be noted that Blasphemous‘Platforms has been considered one of the weakest aspects of this great game overall. The update also adds a new Boss Rush mode, where after finishing the game, players can battle an entire group of bosses one after another and get a score for how well they do.
Blasphemous is available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
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