Valdis Story: Abyssal City Review

Valdis Story: Abyssal City Review

Developer: Endless Fluff Games
Publisher: Endless Fluff Games
Platform: PC
Release Date: September 8, 2013
Price: $14.99 US
Where to Buy: Steam

Valdis Story: Abyssal City is a 2D side-scrolling action adventure game much like Castlevania. Valdis Story is an extremely challenging fun and at times frustrating game.

There is a war between angels and demons fighting for victory in this world.  Your crew was caught between this war and has crash landed in a strange unknown city.  You must explore the history of this city to figure out what is going on and try to find your crew mates.

The story is not the main attraction to this game you can get through this game just following the next objective and concentrate on fighting and exploring.  Still it is a very interesting storyline that leads to awesome scenery and set pieces.  This city has a lot of history and mystery that has for you to discover if you choose.

The good part is there is a lot of depth to the story if you are interested but if you decide that you just want to kill things thats ok too.  You are unable to skip cut scenes  but they are pretty short anyway.  You don’t have to be invested in the storyline to be good at this game.  Though there is a huge library of lore that you can shift through if that does interest you.

The gameplay is the main focus of Valdis Story since it is built around a robust combat system.  You will be able to use combos and magic combined with upgrading equipment to make your moves better.  Quick reflexes and timing are your friend since enemies are no slouch.

Controls for combat aren’t the greatest but then again I was playing on a keyboard and this game offers controls with a controller.  Since I did not have a controller I was forced to use a keyboard which for a game released for PC might be quite a few.

The controls weren’t bad necessarily but when combined with platforming was a completely frustrating.  Especially since you needed to combine perfect timing of attacks with perfect jumps to defeat certain bosses.  Since the controls just didn’t feel natural on a keyboard and the enemies weren’t forgiving I just got extremely mad and was not enjoying parts of the game.

Granted I am not the best precision fighter to begin with, but there is a difference between making a game challenging and frustrating.  I definitely felt at times more frustrated than challenged.  I actually enjoyed the challenge where I needed to time my attacks, dodges, and counters, but needing to also jump on that tiny platform with all that chaos not so much.

The combat is very fun testing your reflexes to perform the right moves against the various challenging enemies.  They will block, rain fire, stun at the worst moments, and throw many other horrible attacks at you  The enemies offer great fun and variety and you will need to come up with quick tactics to defeat them.  

As you explore more of this world you will become stronger and unlock more areas.  There is a skill tree that allows you to create the fighter you want to create.  You can decide if you want to be able to dish our more melee damage or be better at blasting away your enemies from a distant.

Valdis will not be helpful to newcomers.  If you never played games like this before you will have an extremely hard time figuring out how to defeat enemies.  Many require a certain trick or timing that is never explained in the game at all but finding them will feel very rewarding.     

The gameplay is fun and challenging.  The game will not hold your hand but then again that is fun of it you are forced to learn firsthand how to dodge and beat the enemies cause if you don’t then you won’t move forward with the game.  My only gripe with the gameplay is some of the combat situations given to you are way too challenging to be fun.

The soundtrack goes amazingly well with the game.  Each new section of the game has the right music playing to match the amazing art style of the game.  The different areas all have a different look to them that is amplified by the unique music playing the background.    

There is no voices for the characters but that isn’t really necessary for a game like this.  Most the focus is on the exploration and combat so there wasn’t really a need for voices.  Though the script is well done to add character to the people you meet.  

The sound effects combined with the music was really impressive.  I loved the different themes for each of the zones and thought they were done to match the fast paced style or mysterious exploration parts of the game.
Valdis Story looks and plays beautifully.  For a game so focused on fast paced action it does a great job of making every pixel and sparkle looking dashingly amazing.  I loved exploring the different areas and meeting new enemies.  Even when they would whoop my butt they still looked great.  

The characters you meet along your journey also have a great design to them.  All the different enemy types have a feel and look to them that is unique and portrays what they are.  Enemies that you need to dodge, counter, or just plain avoid can be told by how they look..

The game is also full of lush colors.  Since the game uses old school 2D animation it takes full advantage of the abundance of colors games like these can have.  The environments are really detailed and great too look at.
There was a surprising amount of attention to detail for a game so focused on having fast paced combat.  I really appreciated how it looked even though I was much more worried about not dying but when I high enough levels I definitely saw a lot of beauty to be had.

The biggest downsides is how challenging the game is.  While there will be those who enjoy the extreme difficulty there will be also many that are turned off by the extreme difficulty.  If you are not great at games like myself then maybe you might not enjoy Valdis too much.

Since the game was designed with a controller in mind Valdis those using a keyboard will have a slightly more difficult time.  Especially with the platforming where the game is not forgiving at all.  You will need almost near perfect performance for many sequences in the game.

Though extremely hard challenging those who can meet face this level of difficulty will get a lot of enjoyment out of the game.  Every victory will feel extra satisfying since skill and thinking is extremely important.

– Fun challenging enemies
– Great animations
– Beautiful music
– Lots of unlock
– Intense combat

– Keyboard controls can be hard to use
– Platforming can be frustrating in combat
– Not easy to pick up

8 out of 10

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