Bleak Faith: Forsaken – Review
Follow Genre: Action-Adventure, Souls-like
Developer: Archangel Studios
Publisher: Archangel Studios
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Tested on: PC

Bleak Faith: Forsaken – Review

Site Score
Good: Nice sound design, Cool concept and enemy design
Bad: Unpolished as a game, Needs some reworking
User Score
(2 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.0/10 (2 votes cast)

Every gamer who likes a challenge likes a good Dark Souls adventure. We also appreciate all types of Souls-likes here, even though it seems rather hard to create a good indie Souls-like, and instead, we often see half-done games that mostly focus on recreating the atmosphere while letting the player deal with poor game design or mechanics. Bleak Faith: Forsaken looks nice when looking at some screenshots of the game, but it undoubtedly, unfortunately, falls more into the latter category.


Bleak Faith: Forsaken is an incredibly vague game regarding storytelling. It does not even give you some core tutorials which leaves you in the dark about important abilities. This is somewhat a tradition in Souls-likes, but Bleak does not only largely skip the expected cutscenes or explanation that you would get in “normal” games, but it also combines this lack of information with weirdly confusing graphics that make the game almost feel like some arthouse Dark Souls. Characters you meet that talk to you instead of attacking you are often gifted with a single line, which also doesn’t help you much. It’s one of those games that’s pretty much open to your own interpretation. All we know for sure is that you start off as an anonymous character similar to other Souls-like titles.


We really want to like Bleak Faith: Forsaken, we really do. To those who haven’t played the game yet, it might look like the game takes place in a cool, dystopian city full of forgotten technology and machinery, like a dark fantasy setting. While this might be true, in reality, the game feels rather generic. It feels like original assets make up about fifty percent of the game. Sadly these are copy-pasted all over the world, making the game feel a bit bland. The other fifty percent of the game’s assets are generic medieval assets, which stupidly makes the game even more of a Dark Souls clone, unable to fulfill the atmosphere the trailer or screenshots promised us. Instead, a lot of the world feels half-assed in terms of design and unnecessarily large, which makes the player move a bunch without any purpose. That being said, animations for characters are fine and the visual design of certain enemies is excellent, which might be one of the best things the game has to offer. Creatures in this game can be grotesque, dangerous, or otherworldly, and it’s a mixed bag of weird stuff for the player to experience.


We quite liked the overall sound design. While wearing a pair of headphones, growling creatures can give quite the fright, and it took us a while to differentiate between different creatures. We also appreciated the smaller sound effects, such as the attack sounds, though they sounded much more generic and actually a lot like the original Dark Souls sound effects. The music, however, sounds very cool and matches the game, even though the soundtrack is a collection of a few different genres. There are some synths, choirs, and ambient tracks in the soundtrack, but also a little bit of rock. The music portrays what the graphics don’t do that well, namely presenting the player with an open and mysterious world full of echoing mysteries lurking in the darkness.


There are a few things to unpack in this action-adventure Souls-like game. First of all, the goal is to get ahead while making your way past some bosses. Where you are going exactly? Nobody knows. Why you are there? Who cares. What do you need to do? Make sure you don’t die by the many enemies waiting as you push forward. You do so by fighting and gathering resources and equipment to make your life easier. While the world is pretty large, for a Souls-like game you reach the next area or biome rather fast, which is great if you’re looking for a quicker Souls-like experience. It took us a bit to get used to what the game threw at us, but after the first boss, we quickly liked the exploration and the different areas we came across. What we did not like were the parts where you need to run through empty spaces such as tunnels or climb long ladders without anything going on there.

What’s worse is the combat. You have health and stamina. If your health is depleted you die, obviously, and stamina needs to be kept up as much as possible as every hit, dodge, or sprint drains that stamina bar quickly. Weaponry can be melee or ranged/magic, though you will mostly have some melee options at the start of the game. One of the things that frustrated us most at the start, especially during the first boss, was the hitboxes. While the boss had a lot of range, there were plenty of times when it felt like we should be hitting something, but we ended up only slashing the air. To hit the boss, we needed to practically hug him and whisper soft words in his ear. Dodging feels like jumping away a (too) small distance, and nobody ever told us we could jump. There’s also a portable saving system that gets little to no explanation, so there are a few bad things in the player experience area that could be solved in Bleak by simply explaining the tools at your disposal. On top of that, we experienced some bugs where we got stuck, fell into a random hole, and more. Bleak Faith: Forsaken just feels like there’s a lot of potential that hasn’t been utilized yet, and even more like a game that got released unpolished and unfinished.

On the other hand, slaying regular enemies is almost too easy. Aside from some big boys you probably want to take on from a distance or avoid completely, most enemies go down with three hits from a melee weapon at most. This makes even the scarier enemies a lot less scary, though with the control over your character, as the game is now, it’s probably for the best as difficult fights would feel unfair since the combat just isn’t worked out that well. What we did like is the abundance of items you get to equip on your character, giving the player a lot of options to mix and match some status effects. We also liked the healing system, where you can craft healing potions but only can use two of those potions per fight for some reason. This is an important decision that stops the player from being (too) overpowered.


We hope that the developers will keep improving Bleak Faith: Forsaken. There are definitely some things to like about the game, and there’s also potential. There are some empty locations to fill, and some gameplay elements such as the combat need to be improved and adjusted, but overall there is something to love in this game. The game proves to be an acquired taste, and with some love from the developers, this one might turn into something rather interesting.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.0/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Bleak Faith: Forsaken - Review, 6.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

I'm a game designer, developer, and reviewer. I've been reviewing for since 2017.

No Comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.