Stray Souls – Review
Follow Genre: Survival horror game
Developer: Jukai Studio
Publisher: Versus Evil
Platform: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S
Tested on: PC

Stray Souls – Review

Site Score
Good: Monster designs are cool
Bad: Boring gameplay, Lots of glitches, Absurd plot
User Score
(1 votes)
Click to vote
VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 2.0/10 (1 vote cast)

When you look up Jukai Studio it claims to be ‘an independent studio founded by industry veterans who have had a hand in developing critically acclaimed games with specialization in the horror genre’. As you’d expect, this got us quite hyped for their debut title Stray Souls. This game was supposed to be a genre-pushing survival horror experience that paid homage to classics like Resident Evil. What we got instead was a hot mess. Let’s dive into one of the most disappointing titles of the year.


Stray Souls starts out with a cutscene showing us a massacre. A father goes around his house and murders his pregnant wife, his teenage son, and his younger daughter. On top of that, the entire family seems to be cannibalistic. After this gruesome sight, the game skips forward and introduces us to Daniel. Daniel inherited his grandmother’s house after her passing but soon discovers that dear old grandma got up to some culty stuff on the weekends. Together with the girl next door whom Daniel meets online, he digs into the truth about his biological family since he never knew them. The truth is a lot more bloody than he’d like, as it’s related to the killings from the start.

The game’s lore is told through a combination of cutscenes, text displayed between levels, and lore documents you can find lying around the map. These lore documents especially are easy to miss and if you do find them, they’re super lengthy and dense to read. Sometimes, missing them can make you miss vital context for the story, especially since the plot of this game is completely unhinged with stupid twists and very random elements. This leads to several instances where the characters will mention people, places, or information that you have not heard about and it really detracts from the experience.


Stray Souls is clearly going for a realistic style but completely missed the mark. The still images might have you thinking the game doesn’t look too bad, but as soon as the character models are in motion, the stilted and buggy animations are going to break that illusion. Especially the facial expressions are more often hilarious rather than anything else. On top of that, the amount of visual bugs in this game is staggering. The devs have been working on patches, but the fact that there are so many bugs in a completed product being sold for almost thirty bucks is a shame, nor does it fix the graphics that aren’t bugged but just look ridiculous. Credit where it’s due, the only thing we really do like about the graphics are the monster designs. Some of them were really bland and unimpressive, but a few others looked quite creepy and cool.


The soundtrack of Stray Souls might be the least offensive thing about this game. The music wasn’t anything groundbreaking, but it fits the horror atmosphere, and during some boss fights we might even find ourselves bopping along to the catchy tunes. The game has voice acting and we were honestly surprised by the quality of the actors compared to how cheap everything else in this game feels. It’s almost a shame how well they did, because it only makes the bad animations stand out that much more. Kudos to them for saying their often ridiculous and awkward lines with so much emotion though.


Stray Souls is a survival horror game inspired by retro titles such as Resident Evil, though it takes an incredibly simplified approach to the genre. You won’t be doing many complex puzzles, there’s no inventory system, crafting, or weapon diversity, and the boss fights are just enemies with a very big health bar. Playing as Daniel, you go on a wild hunt to uncover secrets about your family. Mainly this means completing whatever objective the game gives you to proceed to the next area, though the levels are pretty sizable and you can do some exploring on your own. Enemies spawn in waves, so whenever you encounter such a wave you can choose to either run away or use your gun to get rid of them. Fighting is the easier option because you have a dodge mechanic that basically makes you invulnerable and there’s plenty of ammo and first aid kits scattered around the map, rendering resource management obsolete.

The puzzles mentioned above are also incredibly simple, usually only needing you to find an item somewhere else on the map or a code. Don’t expect anything too complex. The hardest thing about the game is the boss battles. Despite the sometimes cool designs, they only require you to shoot them a bunch of times until they die. Usually, games like this can still stand on their own because they have an engaging story, but since Stray Souls doesn’t even have that, a lot of the levels quickly become tedious. The most player influence you have is choosing dialogue options during cutscenes, though they don’t affect the story and always lead to the same outcome. The game ends in a sudden and unsatisfying cliffhanger, presumably to bait us into buying a sequel.

Stray Souls will take you less than five hours to complete and doesn’t have any replayability. Apparently where items and waves of enemies spawn will be randomly decided to add some variety, but it simply isn’t worth it to play the game again.


We cannot in good conscious recommend Stray Souls to anybody. The mediocre gameplay, weird glitches, and absurd plot that ends in an unresolved cliffhanger for no reason, all drag down this game that’s being sold for a pretty steep price considering it’s an indie title. Maybe future games by this dev will be worth playing, but this one can be skipped without remorse.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 2.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Stray Souls - Review, 2.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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