The Pale City is an RPG, a really, really, really fucking hard RPG. You play as Vasek, an asshole. Well he’s also a, I guess, mercenary and thief. But, okay let’s talk about the world to get some explanation about Vasek so you get to understand things better. The world is a giant cube basically, and they don’t know how far down the cube goes, since after a certain distance it’s covered completely in fog. It’s not a big cube either, and the cube is seemingly on a planet cause the people only have access to the top square of this cube.
On this cube is a dying land, the ground doesn’t really breed healthy food, the people… they die and are absorbed into the cube, eventually being reborn within the cube. Most people don’t make it out of the cube for some reason, there are people who go into the dead tunnels which are inside the cube to try and find valuable things. If a child can find its way up out of the cube most people won’t take them in cause, again not much in the way of food, however the religious cult of the land takes care of them to a degree. The world is dying, the people are dying, and it’s a fucking miserable sack of shit land. Everyone just gets used to life being shit, about everything being shit, the food being shit and half rotting most of the time, lack of pretty scenery, lack of land, and lack of happiness all around. This world isn’t just miserable, it IS misery, absolute fucking misery.
Vasek used to deal with the dead tunnels, where children’s dead bodies are, he was provided backbreaking work from day one. On top of that he’s just a miserable sack of shit in general. Most people don’t make it up here too long because even with the place being made of misery incarnate, there are also monster attacks, people call them demons. These cause lots of deaths, so people don’t leave the small civilized areas, but these areas are, because of this shit, overcrowded as fuck and with not enough food to go around people are kinda forced out anyways. This explains why Vasek is such an asshole, most people here aren’t happy, good people; they are miserable, unhappy, and angry.
Well, it’s now his job to go find parts of a golem from a wizard from the old days. Why is this his job? Cause he was fucking paid to do it before the game started that’s why, and he wants his fucking money. This is something very important in the game, you have X amount of enemies in the game, and they give X amount of money, you have to choose what to buy and when. You only get up to like ten gold a fight, and most things are a few hundred gold, so it’s hard to buy anything.
I mentioned there’s only x amount of enemies, and I’ll also add that the enemies are hard to kill. You have two different styles, offensive and defensive, which you can choose at the start of each fight. The game is still hard as fuck. The game stays at that difficulty the ENTIRE FUCKING TIME. Now I talked with the dev about just how hard it was cause I also found a couple glitches, and the dev stated that they would add in an easy mode. Now let me explain this, you can easily get demolished in any fight without bringing the enemies health down to low, which causes their stance to change, and I’m talking about one-on-one fights right now, most fights are NOT one on one, it’s one on multiple people. So this easy mode isn’t going to be too much easier cause the dev still plans the fights to require strategy. I don’t have access to this easy mode as it’s not in the game yet, but it should be there on release, I can’t wait to play that, maybe I won’t suck so much chode at the game.
There are a couple problems with the game though. The biggest is that the game is just fucking brutally hard. You level up but that doesn’t really do anything for you other than giving you some offense and defense, and refills your HP. Refilling the HP is the only really important part, the offense and defense stuff… you don’t get much, and it doesn’t make much of a difference since it takes so damn many attacks to kill anything anyways, and I feel like they all level up with you meaning that that extra attack and armor doesn’t really do fuckall for you. This means the fights don’t really get any easier. Eventually you are able to fight things that you couldn’t fight earlier because you needed to level up a bunch to not get one shot, but that’s about it. The other issue is the text, there’s just so much fucking text, and I don’t mean here’s a few bits of text now I’m talking here’s like 2 or 3 pages of text split over like 10+ talk bits where information is just exposited to the player. Just fucking no, that is BORING, not necessarily because it’s just a bunch of text, but because most of it is just so dry and stated in a matter-of-fact way.
Overall, I like the world that was built here, I like the concept of the fighting in the game, but I don’t actively actually like the game or the fighting in it. It’s just too damn hard, maybe when it gets a full release I’ll try the easier mode and then maybe I’ll enjoy it more, but right now, not so much. Even though I didn’t like the game though, I have to say I hope more games show up in this world, just maybe easier and less wordy more actiony and with infinite fights so people can be cheap, which I know was the exact purpose this was made the way it was, was to prevent that, but that’s just more manageable. I want to see more from this world. The universe that’s being made here is interesting and I want more of THAT, maybe not the game, but the world, all the yes.
Update: A story mode which is easier has been added to the game, I haven’t hand a chance to actually play it though. That being said, it’s easier, but you also get less money in it.
The Pale City was developed by Kyle Muntz
Point of Sale: Steam
A review copy of the game was provided by the dev.
darkmikasonfire does not award The Pale City the Indie Gamer Team Seal of Approval.