Developer Steel Mantis, creator of 2015’s Slain: Back From Hell, recently posted a new, 30 minute gameplay video of their follow up game, Valfaris. The video features amazing pixel art, a peek at some weaponry, and a brief look at some levels. Of course, what we all really came for was the headbanging.
Valfaris is coming to PC, PS4, and Xbox One (no word on Switch yet), and it’s something retro side-scrolling fans should be excited for. Slain: Back From Hell was a heavy-metal-inspired gore-fest set in a dark fantasy world where both new and familiar monsters roamed and ruled. The combat was difficult, the soundtrack was great, and the writing was superb. Also, giant wolves everywhere, so yeah, pretty great. Valfaris is the next thing out of the studio, and they’ve taken all of what made Slain what it was, and transferred that DNA into an H.R. Geiger, heavy-metal space saga.
Almost right off the bat we get some bad news. The game could possibly not release until 2019. We’re probably going to see the game at E3 next week, but I wouldn’t count on a release date since this new video is popping up so close to the event.
On a better note, the gameplay looks great. Like I said, there’s a lot of Slain DNA here, but there’s also some notes of Blackthorne, an old side scroller for SNES. There’s a really cool save system in place too, where you can only activate save checkpoints if you want to, and can only do so by using save crystals. There’s a bonus for keeping the save crystals, but you can only do so at the risk of losing progress when dying. It’s almost a definite that you’ll want to use them periodically, because you’ll most definitely die often.
I will admit that while I enjoyed playing Slain, I wasn’t in love with it like a lot of indie games I’ve played. However, there was a definite style that I was drawn to and a learning curve that I appreciated, even if the game was a little repetitive. After playing Slain, I knew that the next project from Steel Mantis would be even better, and it’s obvious that Valfaris is shaping up to be just that.