If you wander through the Indie Mega Booth at PAX East 2015, you’ll notice a few booths with unusually large crowds huddled together, even for convention standards. We had to reschedule our first appointment to see Titan Souls once, and honestly, almost did so a second time because of the sheer number of people waiting in line to play the game.
We clearly weren’t the only people interested in checking out the action-adventure game from the three-man team at Acid Nerve. Titan Souls was born out of a game jam where the theme “you only get one” led the developers to the idea of a single hero, a single magic arrow and a single health point for you and the titans.
That’s all you get. There are no upgrades, no special abilities and there is absolutely no mercy. The only break you get is the ability to call the arrow back to you if you miss.
Each boss has a vulnerable spot for you to expose, but that’s easier said than done. You’ll start to recognize patterns in the way they move and attack, and it’s up to you to navigate through to fire off the killing shot.
There’s plenty of exploring to do in Titan Souls, and you’re free to tackle the bosses in whatever order you please. The first four are grouped near each other, and compose a sort of tutorial before opening up to the rest of the game world.
When my turn finally came to give it a whirl, I barely made it out of the gate.
It was my unfortunate luck that the developers were showing off the hard mode version of the game the day I managed to play the game, and that mode unlocks only after you’ve killed all of the titans on normal. Let’s just say I thoroughly embarrassed myself.
I felt better knowing the developers were giving away prizes to anyone who could down a titan in less than five tries, even on normal.
I love this style of game, and I know I’m not alone. It’s probably not good for my blood pressure, but the countless near misses are always just as exciting as the final kill. Titan Souls is beautiful in just how well Acid Nerve was able to milk everything possible out of a few simple mechanics.
Luckily we don’t need to wait long to get a hold of the full game, which releases on April 14 for PC, Mac, PlayStation 4 and PS Vita.