Looking past 3000th Duel’s large, cutesy, almost mobile-like graphics reveals something much more profound than expected. This platformer hides intricacies in very meticulously laid out maps that slowly peel back layers into a beautiful and rewarding gaming experience. With elements of both Metroidvanias and Souls-like games, 3000th Duel is so much more than meets the eye.
The game starts with the nameless hero awakening with no memory of who they are. As you slowly being to explore more and more of the map, the story comes together in the form of corpses you can talk to, and hidden journal pages tucked away in dark corners. Combat takes place with giant weapons and is generally very slow and methodical, requiring precision and careful timing of dodges and attacks. While not as deadly as Souls-like games, it certainly has a similar feel.
Bosses can be incredibly challenging, though each has its pattern to learn. Often you’ll find you need to earn more Karma to upgrade your skills a bit more. 3000th Duel prevents you from grinding too much by only allowing you to upgrade to a certain point before needing more memories to boost further.
Another great feature of the game is how you can set up two different load-outs that can easily swap. That means two other weapons and two other Occult (magic) that you can easily switch between with the tap of a button. You also have a limited amount of Violet Scripture to heal yourself with, which can refill at save statues.
There’s a certain feeling of nostalgia when playing the 3000th duel, though it’s hard to pinpoint where it comes from. The game features newer style mechanics with old-school style platforming and exploration at a pace that may infuriate some, but it deliberate and satisfying to anyone willing to put the time into playing the game.
At the time of this writing, you can pick the game up on sale for $7.49 on Steam, which is an absolute steal. Even at the game’s regular price of $14.99, you’re getting fantastic value.
A Steam key for 3000th Duel was provided free for review by NEOPOPCORN
Media personality Rob Kalajian has been a staple in the board game world for many years. As a former writer for Purple Pawn and the owner of A Pawn’s Perspective, Rob focuses on board game reviews, events, and news. A self-proclaimed geek, Rob loves all things toys and games and even helps raise his four kids in his spare time.
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