Garshasp: The Monster Slayer, a game I played for about 12 minutes which consisted of two group minion fights, one slightly bigger mini-boss fight and climbing a couple of ladders before I became frustrated that I couldn’t make a jump to another platform. You might think is slightly childish, but if a game has failed to convey exactly how I should have made that jump in the 12 minutes of game play, then that game has ultimately failed.
I did not like this game. It was just bad. My first warning sign was when I wrote the title for this article and realised the name sounded like a 90 year-old man’s sneeze. Go on, say it out loud. Who came up with that name?
You essentially play Jason Momoa from Conan cross Jason Momoa from Stargate: Atlantis cross Jason Momoa from Game of Thrones… except with less personality. The game starts off with telling you (through awful, telling-narration) that you’re a Persian warrior and your home village is being attacked by monsters. And from this begins God of War. Except the tutorial pop-ups were extremely lengthy and clearly I missed the part which explains how to jump an extra-long distance.
If I had known how to jump that distance, I still probably wouldn’t have been able to due to the terrible camera. The camera automatically rotates as you move through the level. So if you start off moving towards a ladder by pressing forwards, by the time you get there, you might be facing down the street towards a gaping hole in the wall that you can’t actually pass through because it’s not part of the level. This made trying to navigate the bit of jumping near impossible and unpredictable.
This game represents to me what indie games should not be doing, which is taking a AAA game (i.e. God of War, Prince of Persia) and changing the look of it without any innovation of any kind. Maybe the publisher, Dead Mage, didn’t realise that the reason triple AAA games are AAA is because they have so much more money to spend on making a game good in every way. So trying to replicate one of the games with a lesser budget is not going to work.
Garshasp: The Monster Slayer is currently available on Steam for $4.99.