Lies of P is one of the most challenging, well made, solid executions of a Souls-like game and I know it will be a favorite amongst many!
Developer – Neowiz Games, Round 8 Studio
Publisher – Neowiz Games, Fireshine Games
Platforms – PC, PlayStation 5 (Reviewed), Xbox Series
Lies of P by Neowiz Games and Round 8 Studio is an amazing game that takes the world of Pinnochio. It is set in a beautifully dark steampunk world, and adds the gameplay elements of Dark Souls to create something truly unique. It is definitely not for the weak of heart, as it had some of the hardest boss fights I’ve ever experienced, but it can be made much more accessible with an NPC summon system. It’s dark, gritty, and explores the depths a person will go in order to revive a loved one, regardless of what happens along the way.
You are Pinnochio, a revived puppet who is fighting to survive a demolished world that has been overrun by out of control puppets and a disease ridden population of humans. Along the way, you will discover what exactly is going on behind the scenes and work to do your part to help the survivors. One of the main story elements is your ability to either tell the truth or a lie to NPCs that you meet. These options can be something as simple as telling a loved one that someone passed away fighting or that they turned into a monster, to something much more severe that impacts the living or dying of characters. As you progress with more and more truths or lies, you slowly begin to become more human or puppet. It is a very interesting and unique way to progress and impact the story which fits right in line with the story of Pinnochio.
The combat is smooth and varied. Your weapons can be customized in a few different ways that allows you to experiment with a variety of styles of fighting that suits the way you play. Each weapon has a handle and a blade item and these different items can be mixed and matched with almost every other weapon in the game. If you like the swinging style of one handle, like the rapier thrusting motion, but want a huge greatsword blade you can remove the handle from the rapier and attach it to the blade to create a thrusting greatsword. I absolutely love this mechanic! I could feel perfectly happy with upgrading a blade and if I found a better handle attack pattern I wasn’t punished for making this change. It leads to experimenting with every weapon that you find which is wonderful. This mechanic would be well met in other Souls games. In terms of upgrading the handles, you can use a wrench to make the stat ranking of the weapon focused more on your stats as well. Outside of this, there are special weapons that you can purchase with Ergo (Souls) of enemy bosses.
When it comes to equipment and customization of your character’s stats there are 4 inventory slots for armor pieces which are basically puppet internal mechanisms and there are a few slots for amulets. These pieces all provide passive benefits to P such as damage reduction, an increase in resistances to elements and status effects, increasing your carry weight, damage increase to certain enemies, and statistics. Visually there are also unique clothes and helmets that you can wear that are purely aesthetic options.
Another aspect of character upgrades is to upgrade your heart (P-Organ) which you can choose between different aspects such as your dodge capabilities or the total number of healing items you can hold. As you choose these specific traits, you get the chance to add minor effects as well such as increasing the damage you do when you stagger an enemy or increasing the effectiveness of healing items. There are more customization options as well that just provide so much depth to the way you can play Lies of P. It would be one thing if all of these options were confusing, but they are straightforward and to the point so you can easily navigate the different upgrades without it being too much to take in.
In terms of story, Lies of P held my attention. As you progress through the game you are discovering more and more about the source of the destruction of the world you are in and making hard choices throughout. The characters are mostly interesting and the choices you make actually have an impact on your playthrough which is great. There are also multiple endings based on your choices that you make throughout the game, new game plus, alternate bosses, and secret weapons that keep you invested.
I wish I could tell you about the ending, but I am extremely glad that I played Lies of P. It is one of the most challenging, well made, solid executions of a Souls-like game and I know it will be a favorite amongst many!