Swords & Bones – Review
Follow Genre: Action, Adventure
Developer: SEEP
Publisher: SEEP
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

Swords & Bones – Review

Site Score
8.9
Good: Really nice retro title, Trip down memory lane
Bad: Some frustrating parts
User Score
9.7
(3 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.7/10 (3 votes cast)

Lately, we have been taking a closer look at the various new games from developer SEEP. He is well known for his 80s and 90s inspired retro games that cost as much as a pack of bubble gum and will take you back to your childhood. Swords & Bones is an adventure game that takes the player into a medieval setting with short levels that all have hidden trophies to discover, allowing the user to play short segments at a time.

Story

The story of Swords & Bones tells the tale of an unfortunate event that caused serious harm to the human race. Due to unfavorable astral conjunction, every 500 years the Demon World invades the Human World. When the Wolf Demon killed the Human World’s king and took his crown, he proclaimed himself to be the new lord and cast a curse on the kingdom of Vestus. The village is doomed to burn for eternity under its diabolical fate, making the fire impossible to extinguish. Not being satisfied enough, the wolf erected his Castle of Darkness and created legions of the living dead to conquer the world.

After a war in a distant land, one of the many knights of Vestus comes back to his hometown, to see it burning. The game has an unnamed protagonist, he just has his courage and sword and is determined to break the curse by defeating the Wolf Demon.

Story-wise the game is great; you have a nice start for why you are here and what your goal is. Having such a red thread in a classic platforming game gives you the drive to defeat the Wolf Demon and save your hometown. Talking about the story flow, the only parts where the story progresses are at the boss fights, where they give you a short dialogue about what they think about their lord and why you must be destroyed. The game also has two different endings available, one if you just beat the game and one if you collect all the hero trophies to become the legendary knight in golden armor.

Graphics

Swords & Bones has been made in an art style that closely resembles 16-bit graphics. If you would play this game with a SNES controller, you could trick many people into believing that it is a classic game. A few small things that give it away though are the animations, which are really fast, smooth, and fluid, unlike those of actual SNES games. The game presents a handful of different biomes and these are easily distinguishable from each other. While the overall mood is dark and gloomy, the color palette used perfectly fits the genre when comparing them to games like Castlevania and Ghouls ‘n Ghosts.

Sound

Just like the graphics, the sounds will take you back to the golden days of the 16-bit era. The midi music is so enjoyable to hear, that it would be amazing if SEEP releases the tracks alongside the game as a separate purchase. The soundtrack perfectly fits the scenery and will change according to the level. All the sound effects are of very high quality and certain enemies have easily noticeable sound cues so you know how to prepare for battle.

Gameplay

Swords & Bones is an action-adventure game that has some platforming challenges and is easily accessible for all kinds of players. The game starts with an evil Wolf Demon cursing the kingdom of Vestus. When one knight returns from war, he sees his hometown burning and he goes on a quest to defeat the evil for once and for all. Only armed with a sword, you will have to slice and dice your way through waves of enemies.

The gameplay is pretty simple, you complete levels in a location and try to collect hidden treasure and coins to upgrade your character in the shop. If you collect all the hero trophies, then you can unlock a special armor and a sword set of legends to become more powerful and easily dispose of enemies in one hit. At the end of each location, there is a boss fight. These bosses are proud commanders of the Wolf Demon and will use everything in their power to put an end to your career.

During your quest, you will accumulate coins. This currency can be used to buy permanent upgrades in the store, from unlocking magic spells that will help you on your quest, to health and magic upgrades and even new skills like a double jump. These will come in handy as the levels will get harder every time and learning enemy placement is a big must, because some cheap deaths can set you back to the start of the level.

The controls are pretty simple, only needing a few button inputs. This makes the game easy to pick up for all kinds of players. There are some platforming parts where you must maneuver over hazardous places. Luckily, because your character responds pretty fast to actions it won’t be all too hard to bypass these.

Conclusion

Swords & Bones is yet another high-quality production game by SEEP. Next to his other great games, like Adventure Bit and Abduction Bit, Swords & Bones is a trip down memory lane thanks to the vintage graphics and sounds. The story ties in nicely with the events that take place in the world and thanks to the bite-sized gameplay it’s a great bite-sized adventure.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.7/10 (3 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: -1 (from 1 vote)
Swords & Bones – Review, 9.7 out of 10 based on 3 ratings
MC_JP


Never give up on a dream. It might be a long nightmare, but one day it will change into a beautiful reality - MC_JP 2014

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