In The Game: Playback’s ‘Mortal Shell’ Will Brutalize You

Recently I had the chance to check out Mortal Shell from publisher Playstack and, well, here’s the blurb about it:

Mortal Shell is a deep action-RPG that tests your sanity and resilience in a shattered world. As the remains of humanity wither and rot, zealous foes fester in the ruins. They spare no mercy, with survival demanding superior awareness, precision and instincts. Track down hidden sanctums of devout followers and discover your true purpose.

In the few video games I’ve reviewed for BBP! the recurring theme that I’ve come to realize is that I’m simply not good at video games. As a reviewer of sorts that puts me in the precarious position of having to judge a game based solely on my limitations as a gamer. Sure, the knee-jerk reaction would be to write, “THIS GAME IS BAD BECAUSE I AM BAD AT IT. ZERO STARSwhich would be doing a horrible disservice to the dozens or hundreds of people that worked tirelessly to produce it.

Mortal Shell is a game cast from the “SoulsBorn” mould which is to say it is unforgivingly difficult. I would suspect that this would be the case even for the most seasoned of gamers. Personally, I’ve been spoiled by most modern games that allow the difficulty settings to be dialled all the way down to almost no challenge at all and because of that I tend to wither at the first sight of a challenge.

That being said, I did not get very far into the actual game itself…but I kept trying. In the game, your character is something of a cross between a freaky-deeky H.R. Giger drawing and something out of a Tool video. You get a massive sword and the ability to inhabit shells of fallen warriors to fight monsters. You’re only able to absorb so much damage before you’re thrown out of your shell and then you’re in real trouble. While playing the game I died countless times and the learning curve is so steep it’s almost a vertical line.

There was a brief moment of battle where I managed to dispatch a couple of foes before being overcome and the rush I got from that was amazing…but the defeat was crushing and I wanted to put my controller through my TV screen.

I ran the game on my stock PS4 and even on my old-ass plasma TV the game looks gorgeous. Since we’re at the very end of this platform’s lifecycle it would be hard to imagine any company producing a game that looks “bad” but even with that in mind I was pleasantly surprised by the graphics. I’d love to see what the game looks like on PC or even a PS4 Pro and a 4K TV.

So, if you’s a god-tier gamer and you love a game that will brutalize you I would heartily encourage you to check out Mortal Shell.

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