Developer: Storybird Games
Genre: Adventure, RPG, Action, Platformer
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Audience: PEGI 7
Release Date: 25/04/19
Price: £11.99 – Rapid Reviews UK was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.
What the Developers say
Step through time and discover a mesmerizing new action-RPG that looks like it was plucked straight out of the 16-bit era, but plays like a modern-day marvel! Inspired by non-linear Japanese retro adventures, Aggelos hurls players into the middle of a colossal struggle for survival as beings from another dimension threaten to invade the peaceful Kingdom of Lumen. Bursting with secrets and side-quests, and boasting slick melee combat that any 2D action game would envy, Aggelos is the perfect combination of retro style and modern-day game design.
Right off the bat, I could tell Aggelos was not your average Wonderboy clone. At first glance, Aggelos looks and plays like one of those games from the 80s. It is well regarded as a love letter to Wonderboy, and it is not hard to see why so. Aggelos is a retro-inspired 2D Metroidvania where your task is a simple one, to gather the elemental rings and restore peace to the Kingdom of Lumen.
In Aggelos, you are a hero tasked by the King and his daughter to seek out the elements as you happen to be the only one capable of doing so. You start with basic hack and slash abilities, and as you progress through the game, you learn more attacks and skills which include magic. The gameplay reminds me of Zelda II and Owlboy, in a good way. At the start, the enemies seem to be quite easy, and you might even think this game might be a piece of cake, but once you’re about a quarter into the game, that’s when the game’s difficulty spikes up. At that point, every heart matter and you would do well to be stocked up on inventory to defeat enemy bosses. (One of the bosses took me eight tries to get it over with). Aggelos is a game where you are likely to die often, but thankfully each death does not cost you more than a loss of few hundred exp (which can be quickly gained through a bit of grinding).
Proceeding through the game, you will meet new characters who will teach you skills or give you items (it is important to head back and check places that were not accessible at the start) and also it is advisable to replenish your inventory and upgrade to new equipment whenever possible. Also notable is that while exploration is entirely optional, it does reward you well through the form of experience and items (without the teleportation item, travel would still be possible but super tough). Aggelos takes around 6 to 8 hours to complete, it might be a short ride, but it sure is worth it.
Audio & Visual
The game looks neat and appealing, graphics wise if you’re into retro-style games you know what to expect, and Aggelos does not disappoint. I feel the enemies, especially the bosses, were well designed. The soundtrack is decent, though it does not leave much to remember.
The normal mode is tough, and for those looking for a challenge, there’s the hard mode which tests your limits. The game can be fully completed with all unlockable in around 10 hours, and there’s not much replayability unless you’re a speedrunner trying to perfect your time.
In conclusion, Aggelos is a hidden gem worth playing. Amid dozens of retro-inspired games, Aggelos does stand out for having good gameplay and gives a sense of progress while not overstaying its welcome. For those who miss playing Zelda II or Wonderboy, playing Aggelos will provide them with feelings of nostalgia.
For new players, the hardness might be a challenge, but once you get used to the enemy patterns and attacks the game provides a high dose of fun. I didn’t expect myself to have as much fun as I ended up having with Aggelos. Thus this is a short, sweet game worth checking out.
Rapid Reviews UK Rating
You can purchase Aggelos from the Nintendo eShop at the following link, https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/Aggelos-1545383.html