This review of Morbid: The Seven Acolytes was conducted using a copy of the game given to me by the game’s publisher. This does not affect my judgment of the game in any way and is explained for the purposes of transparency.
A plague has taken over Mornia where you, the last Striver a warrior trained to fight this evil, find yourself. You must find and destroy beasts known as the Acolytes, which will prevent the spread of corruption. It is clear from the gameplay that Morbid takes a lot of inspiration from the Souls-like genre. Careful strategy and stamina management are required, as well as learning the attacks of enemies to avoid death.
Despite its similarity to Souls-like games, Morbid: The Seven Acolytes manages to pull away slightly from the pack. With an isometric view and heavy use of body-horror imagery, Morbid stands out as its own game rather than another Souls-like game. Morbid does look great with its pixel-art style. Somehow they manage to properly capture disgusting body horror. One of the first things you will spot is two halves of a whale… Lovely.
Your character is able to equip a variety of weapons, ranging from spears to fist weapons. As a Strider, you are also able to wield and use ranged weapons, with limited ammo. However, there are no options for armor, which I feel is a missed opportunity that would allow for interesting builds.
Speaking of missing opportunities, there is no form of shop or trading in Morbid. This often led to me dropping items when my inventory was full. I do understand that in the setting of the game a shop would not really fit in. After all, if I were a shopkeeper, I don’t think I’d want to set up shop in a place full of fish-men and exploding blood plants.
Because this is a Souls-like resting areas, called Shrines, are few and far between. Shrines provide you will healing, leveling up and the option to upgrade your gear, at the cost of respawning enemies when used. With healing items scattered sparingly and with limited uses, you have only a refilling, limited use healing item. You will need to use Shrines often to keep your health topped up.
Morbid: the Seven Acolytes has a slightly different system for progressing your character. Rather than leveling up, you will gain XP to use on Blessings; buffs that you are able to swap out at shrines. These blessings include increasing Max HP and Stamina, but you do gain more Blessings as you progress through the game.
The boss fights are, mostly, quite basic, unfortunately. You are required to dodge, hit, repeat while watching stamina levels. The most unique boss fight was with a pair of enemies in a small arena, with balls of fire being shot at you while you fight. It isn’t the most difficult fight, but it is the most different (and does have some pretty awesome harpsichord and string music.)
Overall, Morbid: The Seven Acolytes is a fun and unique addition to the Souls-like genre, adding a dark and intriguing setting and story, gory pixel art, and challenging combat. It is worth the buy for those who enjoy combat-orientated games!