Souldiers, the review of a solid but not very charismatic metroidvania

Souldiers, the review of a solid but not very charismatic metroidvania
Written by aquitodovale

The review of Souldiers, a metroidvania made according to the classic canons and therefore too little original.

The kind of metroidvania he has long since risen and, as often happens, it is thanks to the indie world. Over the past few years, more and more top-tier games have been released and the public has responded by putting their money on the pot.

This has pushed more and more independent teams to focus on this genre. The direct consequence is that now the market is full of proposals and, with a rather high average quality, to emerge by now it may not be enough to propose a valid game: the goal can only be excellence.

This is precisely the problem of Souldiers, the new metroidvania of Retro Forge. The team, in their first test on the field, made a solid game, which however fails to impress, from almost every point of view.

It is a bit anticlimactic to reveal it immediately, but in this ours review by Souldiers we will explain to you why we have come to this conclusion.


Terragaya is the setting for Souldiers

Souldiers is set in Terragaya, a sort of limbo between life and death, which is accessed thanks to Valkyrie, taken directly from Norse mythology. Our character is a generic soldier who, in the real world, was trapped under a landslide along with his fellow soldiers.

With the beginning of the adventure, we will be able to choose ours class, which will remain fixed throughout the game. We have the classic soldier with a sword and shield, a ranger with a bow and a wizard with a stirrup. The difference is not only related to the weapon, but also and above all to the skills. Each class has its own skill tree, and as you level up, you can unlock them, gaining new abilities and attacks.

Each class pushes you to fight and approach levels differently. Class management is one of the best components of Souldiers and for this reason it is regrettable that two out of three are blocked. The idea, we believe, is to encourage replayability, but it would have been nice to be able to change them at set points, to enjoy all the gameplay ideas and be able to adapt to the various clashes with the most comfortable class from situation to situation.

Souldiers' classes
Souldiers’ classes

This would also have helped reduce some of the spikes difficulty. Souldiers, even on minimal difficulty, is not a rose water game. The bosses, in particular, can destroy the player in a few hits and it will be necessary to spend some time studying their moves before reaching victory. The differences between the various fights are nice, even if on average the number of moves is limited.

As for the common enemies, there are plenty of them, but many are stylistically generic and uninspired. This criticism can be extended to the whole artistic sector of Souldiers.

Don’t get us wrong, there is great care in what is crafted by Retro Forge. The environments they are full of detail, both in the foreground and in the background, with moving and destructible elements that bring each area to life. The problem is that almost everything tastes like it’s already seen, with a pixel art that doesn’t mind, but never manages to impress.


Souldiers will turn us against classic creatures
Souldiers will turn us against classic creatures

At least, the environments are treated in terms of design. As mentioned, Souldiers is a metroidvania. Don’t expect a single huge map that connects in dozens of points, but rather a series of areas with various internal passages, backtracking and secrets. You have to go back and forth in the little big world of Souldiers, looking for everything that is hidden around, re-exploring each area several times to see what has been lost and to complete side missions.

There is obviously no shortage of various kinds of enhancements necessary to interact with the game world and create new passages, including elemental orbs which will also allow us to attack the weaknesses of the enemies. All of this, however, is not particularly original and each section will know a little of what has already been seen and we will not be too surprised by the secrets hidden by the exploration.

Souldiers doesn’t make any real mistakes and always turns out to be a solid game, but he always lacks that extra spark. Of course, there are some objective limits. The control system is not always very comfortable, but above all we suggest players to pay attention to the rescue system. In each dungeon there are save points that allow you to heal yourself, make enemies reappear and secure your progress. It is better to exploit them in profusion because with each death you lose everything you have done: experience points, exploration of the map, collected objects, key moments overcome. Nothing remains and you have to go back to the last save; if you turn the wrong corner and advance into an area with a powerful enemy or trap when you’re not prepared, that’s the end. There are some autosaves, but they are just patches.

More “experienced” players may not be worried, but younger players accustomed to more permissive save systems may run the risk of running into a bit of frustration in having to redo certain passes over and over, with the feeling of having only wasted time .

Each class of Souldiers has its own skill branch
Each class of Souldiers has its own skill branch

Without making any kind of spoilers, we point out that even the plot is certainly not the most surprising and it is not the main reason why you should approach Souldiers. Finally, we specify that the game it is not translated into Italian: there is no shortage of dialogues, so keep that in mind.


Tested version Windows PC

Digital Delivery


€ 19.99

Souldiers is a solid game, clearly crafted with care and passion, but that’s not always enough. This metroidvania struggles to amaze the player in every component, be it artistic, narrative or design. The class differences are nice, but we don’t think many will want to replay the whole adventure to see how the unselected classes change the style.


  • Everything you expect from a metroidvania
  • The differences between the classes are significant
  • The environments are rich in visual details


  • Extremely derivative in every component
  • Some difficulty peaks

#Souldiers #review #solid #charismatic #metroidvania

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