Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice review – the same Dark Souls only with samurai

The game Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is the brainchild of FromSoftware, known primarily for its Dark Souls franchise and projects very similar to it. This game can also be attributed to the last category, since multiple similarities are visible here with the naked eye. Even though the setting with the plot in these games is completely different, the game mechanics and the combat system have the same foundation. In this regard, the game has both many advantages and a number of disadvantages. But which of these is more?

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Review Review

Path of revenge

But before you start comparing the game with the legendary series and talking about what kind of katana chopping in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice it is worth saying a little about the plot. It is this aspect in the game that is significantly different from the same Dark Souls and Bloodborne. What is the main difference here? The answer is simple – in the manner of the storytelling. If in Dark Souls it was necessary to search for objects and restore the picture of the world by particles while having a gray and boring protagonist, whom we ourselves created, then in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice things are a little different. The game takes place in an alternative feudal Japan of the 16th century, and the main character is the warrior Sekiro, whose main goal is to protect the young lord during the next bloody clan confrontation. One fine day, Sekiro does not cope with his task and the young master is kidnapped, and the protagonist’s hand is cut off. After waking up after the attack and replacing the limb with a hook with a cat, the main character embarks on a bloody path of revenge.

The setting is another difference between Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and other similar projects from FromSoftware. Gloomy demons are replaced here by ninjas, samurai and fabulous creatures, and the dark demonic world by medieval Japan with its unforgettable charm and atmosphere. However, if you do not take into account the history and environment, you can easily recognize the corporate identity of the Japanese developers from the game.

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Review Review

Fight, die and then fight again

The gameplay in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is a good old-fashioned action RPG with a leveling system and hundreds of moves and skills to choose from. In the game you will have to swing your sword a lot, dodge and use the grappling hook. Fights in the game, as in the same Dark Souls, are based on a competent combination of techniques and clear timing. A similar manner of playing is achieved by hundreds of deaths and long memorization of all the necessary combinations for a certain type of enemy. This process is quite long and sometimes necessary, but without it, there is simply nothing to do in FromSoftware games. The battles in the game are conducted according to the following scheme: struck a couple of blows, made a somersault, used one of their skills and again inflicted new damage on the enemy by another not the most difficult combination. In the game, you should always be on the lookout, because a couple of missed attacks will quickly knock you back and force you to go through all over again.

Bosses have a special place in the game. There are more than enough of them here, and they are all different, both in terms of appearance and in terms of attacks. In this regard, you will not be able to kill the boss with the same attack as the past. You always need to look for an individual approach to this kind of opponents, and it can, of course, be achieved through numerous deaths and memorizing combinations. One thing is clear here for sure – in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice you will definitely not be easy. And whether it’s a plus for the game or a minus, decide for yourself.

The game also has stealth, which manifests itself in the fact that you can get close to the enemy from behind and quickly kill him with an attack with a sword. Not to say that such an element of the gameplay brings a strong variety to the game, but the opportunity to visit the world of Sekiro not only as a brave samurai walking ahead, but also as a cunning ninja who, using a cat hook, quietly sneaks up on the enemy from behind and quietly kills him.

As in any normal action RPG, the player has the opportunity to upgrade his character. Improve certain skills and abilities, acquire new weapons and abilities, as well as improve characteristics so that in more difficult battles you do not die so often. There are more than enough tools to kill the enemy – swords, daggers, axes and other edged weapons from the times of ancient Japan are at your disposal. And if you also take into account hundreds of attacks and combinations for each of them, then we can say for sure that there is more than enough variety in terms of the combat system in the game. True, it is worth noting one important nuance in the game in terms of weapons. The fact is that, in fact, the main character will have the same katana throughout the game, however, for the second hand, which replaces the prosthetic hook, you can choose any weapon. You can easily even install a flamethrower or flying shurikens for her. But even this does not prevent you from combining both of these weapons, creating your own unique fighting style.

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Review Review

Well, what does it look like?

Well, how can Japanese games do without a good picture. Not to say that Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice shows some unique graphics, but the design of locations and enemies looks memorable and beautiful, and various effects like rain and light also have a positive effect on the visual component of the game. Enemies look disgusting and terrible (in the good sense of these words), they really want to be killed, and in the most cruel way. In general, in Japanese games, the creation of an unforgettable setting and atmosphere has always been at a high level, so in this regard, you don’t have to worry about the game.

The soundtrack in the game is also at a high level. The soundtrack in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, as well as the graphics, is at a high level and pretentious melodies will accompany the main character throughout the entire path of revenge. If you sum up the picture and sound, then in this regard, you don’t have to worry about Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, the game keeps the bar of past FromSoftware creations and perfectly complies with all the standards set earlier by the studio.

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Review Review

What can you say about the project in the end?

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is the same action RPG from FromSoftware with its proprietary game mechanics, which is a complex and varied combat system. Is it good or bad? In my opinion, if a company has a formula by which it is possible to make successful projects, then why not follow it at the same time, not stupidly copying game after game (from the point of view of the plot, setting and some aspects of the gameplay, Sekiro is fundamentally different from Dark Souls ), but creating something new and interesting albeit with recognizable outlines. Of course, there are also those disadvantages for which many players do not like the Dark Souls series, and the main one is the high difficulty. If you are ready to die often and memorize all the combinations, simultaneously dying at the hands of the next boss for the hundredth time, then the new project from FromSoftware can become a good alternative to the same Dark Souls series for you, but if the Japanese flavor and high difficulty are not for you, then it is better and not come close to Sekiro and play something simpler and more understandable. Well, the game itself can be rated quite highly and hope that the Japanese will continue to delight hardcore gamers with new challenges.

LID2PRO reviewer verdict


Hardcore and challenging gameplay in the spirit of Dark Souls, but in the world of feudal Japan, not everyone will like it. But if you want to test your nerves and gaming skills, then Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice will pull you in for a long time.

There is nothing supernatural in the game in terms of the visual component. Good locations, well-developed and atmospheric levels and enemies. Do you need something more when you are all on your nerves trying to defeat the tenth enemy in a row, so that you do not get killed and do not have to go through all over again.

In terms of sound, the Japanese from FromSoftware keep the bar high and, by means of a pretentious soundtrack, create exactly the atmosphere that prompts them to go into battle even after the tenth, or even the hundredth death. So if you love good sound in games, then Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice will definitely not disappoint you.

Single player campaign

Even taking into account the presence of stealth, cat hook and other new game mechanics, the “foundation” of the game is felt in the first minutes of the gameplay. The story of the samurai avenger will hardly surprise anyone, but the mysterious and mystical world of Sekiro attracts and you will probably want to look into it and go the path of revenge, unless of course you are afraid of high complexity.

Fighting with swords, using a cat’s grappling hook or banal movement – all this is done easily and simply in the new game, which only improves the impression of her. Therefore, if we talk about management, then there are no complaints about Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

A good and interesting project for fans of Japanese 3-person action games and the Dark Souls franchise in particular. If you love difficulties, an abundance of enemies and pumping, as well as Japanese flavor and memorable levels with enemies, then welcome to the world of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

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