Read our thoughts on the full Godfall experience, Godfall: Ultimate Edition, in our review.
It’s been almost a year and a half since the initial release of Godfall. Touted as a major next-gen experience, as a console exclusive for the PlayStation 5, this launch title was released to mixed reviews. It was forgotten mostly, leaving behind somewhat of a cult following who continues to play the endgame experiences to this day.
Now, Godfall has been released for plenty of platforms. Not only has it seen a release on the PlayStation 4, but also the Xbox family of consoles, and Steam for those who prefer Valve over Epic Games. But, with over a year of content and updates, is Godfall worthy of a place in your library, or to be forgotten by history furthermore?
- Game: Godfall: Ultimate Edition
- Price: $39.99 (Steam and Xbox for $29.99 for a limited time)
- Platforms: PS4/5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC
- Read our full Review Policy here
Godfall: Ultimate Edition – Full Review
Looting, Slashing, and Not Much Else
If you haven’t heard much about Godfall’s story (what little there is, anyway), let me give you the rundown. Godfall takes place on Aperion, on the edge of complete devastation. Orin, who you play as, is one of the last Valorian knights. Valorians are powerful warriors, able to use Valorplates, equally powerful and legendary sets of armor that offer varying skills and abilities.
The main antagonist is Macros, another powerful warrior and brother to Orin. He is on the path to becoming a God, leading warriors and attempting the Rites of Ascension to destroy all that is left. Obviously, this isn’t good, so you need to stop his army and halt his plans in order to save Aperion.
Having a brother-on-brother showdown about the future of an entire world, with differing values and means to an end had the possibility of creating an interesting dynamic. However, there’s pretty much nothing of note here. Godfall’s story is about as wide as an ocean and deep as a puddle, spreading itself way too thin over the run time. Moments that seem interesting are fleeting and too little, and many of Godfall’s story beats are either average or completely dull.
That’s not to say there’s nothing of value here, however. Godfall’s strength doesn’t lie in its narrative but rather, in the gameplay cycle. Taking the genre looter-slasher at the helm, as opposed to a looter-shooter and going full steam ahead, Godfall attempts to leave its mark using swords over guns, in a market that is fairly saturated with great looter games (see Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands or Destiny 2).
Looter-Shooter With A Different Name
Godfall’s main gameplay mechanic is trading in guns for swords and other melee weapons. Instead of using bullets, you’re using a variety of skills related to melee, along with a trusty shield too. While the basic attacks are simple, adding in new skills via the skill trees such as Weapon Techniques, Polarity Attacks, and a wide range of other abilities varies the combat enough to keep it interesting.
The Soulshatter mechanic is one of my favorite things about Godfall, allowing you to make light attacks on enemies to add to their Soulshatter. Using a heavy attack after will knock down large chunks of health in an instant. It makes the combat feel more strategic as opposed to constantly button mashing.
In fact, many of Godfall’s different mechanics add strategy to a pretty basic core. The aforementioned skills, as well as different skill trees for each Valorplate and the augment system add a layer of complexity to what is a pretty simple gameplay loop. The loot, while arriving in troves, is inconsequential, to say the least. Unlike games like Destiny 2 or other Looter games, I feel like the loot is a second thought. It’s always fun to see purple or yellows drop and get that feeling of excitement, but it quickly fades when every weapon feels the same as their other rarities.
That being said, there’s at least an attempt at allowing players to build their perfect Valorplate and loadout. Offering upgrades to weapons, including upgrading the associated stats as well as some other pieces of loot (such as Banners, Rings, Amulets, etc.) keep it fun, at least during my playtime.
Endgame, Main Game, All the Same
Godfall: Ultimate Edition allows you to skip the mostly unnecessary main campaign to head straight to level 50, with the ability to access the endgame content. It feels weird that Counterplay made an effort to say the story isn’t even worth your time. And in all honesty, it really isn’t. The endgame adds some interesting mechanics to the existing loop of Godfall, but doesn’t add in enough to warrant any more of your time if you had played the story through.
Skipping through means you can still access story missions at your own pace, which is definitely a better choice than trudging along with the campaign at a snail’s pace. If you decide to play the story, you’ll likely be burnt out by the time you reach the endgame. While the endgame does add some interesting mechanics and modes to the game, with plenty of choices from the new Spirit Realms mode to the Trials, it feels like small steps rather than anything.
You’re still killing smaller creatures, then larger and harder creatures, and then bosses. The updates that Godfall has had since launch have made an otherwise disappointing game slightly better, and you’re certainly likely to get your money’s worth, especially at the launch discount. But it’s a fresh coat of shiny paint on something which has long dried up. There is fun to be had here, and if you like meticulously crafting your characters to perfectly suit you, you’ll be interested. But it feels like a game out of time, releasing far too late, missing out on a place on the top games of 2013.