Children of Morta has been developed by Dead Mage and published by 11 Bit Studios, the game is a story-driven hack’n’ slash action top-down RPG with rogue-lite elements.
I am not a huge fan of pixelated games, I normally just miss them off my list, but there was something about Children of Morta that peaked my interested. Maybe it was because I rather enjoyed a story-driven game called Bastion from developers Supergiant Games, that game was amazing and I really enjoyed my time playing the game. I watched a few trailers, read up on the game through the official website from Dead Mage, even checked out some gameplay from the PC version as that version got released before the Nintendo Switch. After some time checking out the game, I decided to grab a copy for myself and give the game a fare review.
An evil corruption is spreading across a once peaceful mountain of Mount Morta, a corruption that changing the mountain into your worse nightmare and allowing all types of monsters to take over. The Bergson family, which you take control of, have been the guardians of Mount Morta for Generations, now there greatest challenge is ahead of them. As this is a narrative story-driven game, you do not really want me to spoil everything for you right? I know I would not, so I am going to simply say that the story is intriguing, touching and emotional on times. The actual narration of the game is stunning and well thought out with a voice actor, that you tend to enjoy listening too.
When you first start the game, you will get told of a disaster that is looming on the horizon and one of the family members called John is told to find out and confirm what is happening. During this section you will learn all the basics of the game, dash (B), attack (Y), special attach and so on. John is the character I rather enjoyed playing, mostly because I enjoy characters that hold a sword and shield. As you progress through the game you will unlock 5 more playable characters, all with different skills and abilities all offering a unique experience, making a total of 6 playable characters these include the following
- John, A Warrior, Unlocks at the start of the game.
- Linda, A Bard, Unlocks during the prologue where you learn how to play the game.
- Kevin, An Assassin.
- Mark, A Monk.
- Lucy, A Pyromancer.
- Joey, A Brawler.
The home of The Bergson family is pretty big, it is like a french family farmhouse. Underneath the house, has been converted from a wine cellar into what can only be described as a quest point, a place which you appear if you die within a dungeon. In the centre is a large crystal, not to be confused as the ‘The Dark Crystal’. I would recommend watching The Dark Crystal on Netflix, as a fan of the original movie I personally loved the series and not wait for season 2 which is due out towards the end of 2020, now back to the game.
The crystal acts as a life source, when you die in the dungeon, the crystal pulls you back and brings you back to life. Around the crystal of three doorways/portals, within each portal, you will find a set number of zones with each zone holding a set number of floors to clear. At the end of each zone, you must defeat the boss, once you defeat all the boss within a zone, you will release one of the guardians of the mountain, who will provide you with details on the corruption and where to go next.
Now you might be thinking you are going to choose one character and play that character all the time, this is something you can not do, you need to mix it up and learn them all, why is this? Well if you use a member of the family to many times they can start suffering from corruption and lose a percentage of there health. So what do you do? well, when running a dungeon you will pick up gold that can be spent in The Bergson family’s house, like upgrading your gear etc., You can also pick up charms and relics that give you special abilities like a Shield that surrounds you and damages enemies as an example. You will also gain XP, that allows you to level up, which unlocks skill points that can be spent within a family members skill tree. You can unlock skills like a special attack or even permanent skill like a speed boost. I would really recommend you spend a lot of time in dungeons not to just level up, unlock new skills and gain gold, but to find artefacts that unlock more upgrades that you can spend on.
The best thing about the dungeons is they are randomly generated, never one is the same as the next, so you never got bored, unless you are bored of the game already. While running dungeons lookout for health drops, they are not that often, and gemstones. Gemstones are a form of currency within the dungeons and allow you to purchase items from a shop keeper and unlock locked chests. If you do end up struggling a little why not grab a co buddy and play the game with the two-player co-op option, I never did really.
I found each and every dungeon stunning to explore and I never really got bored of them, the narrative of the game kept you wanting to know more as the game’s story progressed. The pixel art of Children of Morta is absolutely stunning, add to that the well thought out animations, the voice acting and the music makes a great indie title.
Children of Morta on the Nintendo Switch has some performance issues, but nothing game breaking, the game looks great, plays great and deserves to be purchased.
- Developer: Dead Mage
- Publisher: 11 Bit Studios
- Genre: Action role-playing game
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Macintosh operating systems
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