Wayward Souls Review

By , on April 28, 2014
Last modified 10 years, 2 months ago

Wayward Souls
Download on the AppStore
5 out of 5


  • Great mix of retro and modern design
  • Intuitive controls allow for tight combat
  • Huge randomised world to explore


  • Randomised levels can seem to conspire against some classes


Wayward Souls is easy enough for anyone to pick up, hard enough to make even the most seasoned players pull out their hair, and a must-play for hack-'n-slash enthusiasts.

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In theory, games with procedurally generated levels can offer an eternity of gameplay. For this near endless resource to be worth tapping, however, the journey has to be worth revisiting. 

The moment we stepping into the cruel and unforgiving world of Wayward Souls, we felt oddly at home. Its top-down 2D perspective gives the game a classic 16-bit RPG look, while the brutal permadeath runs and persistent leveling underscore the game's roguelike heratige. Wayward Souls embraces these influences and seamlessly blends them to create something that is at once familiar and fresh.

Tight controls are a huge element of of Wayward Souls success. The interface allowing you to intuitively come to grips with each character class without exhaustive instruction. This is no mean feat, either. With classes ranging from warrior to cultist, there are a huge range of different fighting styles available. Melee fighters can swing their weapons indefinitely, but must place themselves in harms way to deal damage. Magic users, on the other hand, have to manage their limited mana bars to stand a chance of keeping spells flying.

Luckily, each class can be leveled up from a shared coin pool. These upgrades offer the only persistent improvements to characters, and can dramatically increase their chances of survival. Sharing the coins between classes means that, in theory, you can continue the game with stronger characters while feeding other classes upgrades, though normally we simply found ourselves improving our favorite warriors.

Everytime we attempted to ascend the increasingly hostile floors of the Wayward Souls's terraforming tower, we felt better prepared than before. After a couple of runs we had learned the attack pattern of some enormous mining robots. A few attempts later, and we were squaring off against the game's first boss. Death followed swiftly, but the triumph of the achievement dwarfed the disappointment, and spurred us onto to yet another run.

Every moment you spend in the game's musty corridors has tangible value, whether you're earning more coins to boost your health bar, nailing the block command, or sizing up your foe's weaknesses for later glories.

Wayward Souls is a hugely enjoyable and elegantly compulsive battler which offers massive rewards for those willing to learn its merciless lessons. We suggest you start your schooling ASAP.


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