ReviewsReview: Young Souls

Review: Young Souls

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Being an outcast can be tough to swallow. Therefore, you have to have a thick skin and great resolve if you wish to survive. However, you always wonder why people dislike you just because you are different. All you want is a quiet life, but to be accepted, you must step up and show you care. Young Souls uses this idea in its bizarre fantasy story.

Developed by 1P2P and published by The Arcade Crew, this is an arcade beat ’em up with RPG elements. It’s a dungeon crawler that has the sass of Olli Olli World and the dark elements of Deaths Door. Furthermore, it can be enjoyed solo or cooperatively and is available on Game Pass. Subsequently, you and a mate can enjoy this title for nothing, so what’s to lose?

Young Souls is a story of redemption. 

It can be tough to change how the world perceives you. Yet, this is the core message of Young Souls! You control a pair of twins who are Jenn and Tristan. Their world was turned upside down when they were orphaned at a young age. However, fate stepped in and they were adopted by an eccentric scientist. Unbeknownst to them, this chance encounter would change their entire lives.

The professor has a brilliant mind, and he hides many great secrets! However, the cat is out of the bag when he goes missing. Worried about his safety, the twins enter the secret part of his lab and discover a hidden goblin world. This is the start of their strange adventure through sprawling dungeons. They must overcome monsters, gargantuan bosses, and stop the leader, Dwaverngobben, from destroying their town.

Young Souls is full of gargantuan machines.
Giant goblin machines.

Hack’ n’ slash and collect the loot.

Though the story of Young Souls is amusing and touching, the action is hectic. The gameplay focuses on hack’ n’ slash combat, oodles of loot, and upgrading the ginger heroes. Furthermore, what makes it particularly appealing is the simplicity of its design. From the opening gambit, you know what to expect and very little changes. Now, this may sound like it plateaus early on, but it doesn’t. Luckily, the developers have drip-fed new elements and mechanics to keep things fresh. Moreover, as you progress, the difficulty increases exponentially. Therefore, you are challenged from the beginning to the end and this makes it moreish as hell.

The action is broken down across four unique locations. On top of this, you must find four special keys that unlock new paths and treasure chests. Subsequently, you must return to each area if you wish to explore every nook and cranny. This was an excellent approach from the developers that helps the learning curve. Furthermore, you’ll explore each area thoroughly and this doesn’t become tiresome. With new bosses to find, loot to gather, and secrets to discover, Young Souls is full of surprises. 

Welcome to Goblin Street.
Goblin Street is a thing of beauty.

Bosses, levelling up, and plenty of equipment. 

Every great RPG has custom options at its core. Luckily, Young Souls is no different. You’ll gain XP for every monster you kill and this is used to level up your characters. However, unlike traditional RPGs, your three stats are automatically improved. I can understand that this may seem restrictive, but the developers have allowed some freedom. Occasionally, you are awarded a token to use in the local gymnasium. Here you complete a mini-game that improves one of the three skills. Luckily, the task is simple as you must keep your cursor within the marker. However, though it’s easy to understand, obtaining 5 stars and the maximum result is harder than it looks. Consequently, you’ll struggle to get the best out of the exercise, and this will frustrate you.

Where this excels is its vast range of monsters, demi-bosses, and enormous overlords. The selection of enemies will blow your mind and keep you on your toes. Subsequently, each area funnels the heroes to an encounter with either the underlings or a massive guardian. Alongside these creatures, you’ll face traps, darkness, and plenty of trickery. As you face off with each of the overlords, you’ll be awarded new equipment, guardian tears, or a rune of power. Each of these items is as important as one another as they improve your character and help you progress.

You can purchase and find different sets of armour and weapons that’ll change your approach. Whether you use a slow two-handed sword or swift knives, they both have strengths and weaknesses. Furthermore, you can equip enchanted items that’ll resist cold, heat, electricity, and more. These items can be changed on the fly, so you can alter your style depending on which enemy you face. 

Young Souls plays like a comic book.

I loved the gameplay, but what amazed me was Young Souls’ phenomenal art style. The beautiful imagery, interesting landscapes, and colourful world were brilliant to look at. Moreover, the developers have done an amazing job of replicating a comic book. It was fascinating to explore each dungeon while taking on every monster. Alongside this, the cinematic was stylish and amusing. I adored the cutscenes and found the information to be captivating and humorous. The graphical approach was excellent, well-considered, and ran smoothly on the Xbox Series X.

The presentation was further enhanced because of the wonderful audio. A brilliant mix of folksy and high-tempo music helped convey the story. I loved the blend of tunes and the crashing sound effects. Sadly, though, there were a few things that were missing. First, there were no clichéd “Wham, thwack, and capow!” speech bubbles. These would have added to the comic book approach and would have matched the style. Furthermore, the story relied heavily on text rather than acting. Consequently, this was a missed opportunity. Had this been incorporated, then the game would have gone to the next level.

Hit the gym and get stronger.
Time to get strong!

Lots to learn but easy to play. 

Thanks to its array of weaponry, a vast selection of monsters, and different environments, there is lots to learn. Therefore, it’s understandable that gamers may feel overwhelmed. Fortunately, however, the simple controls and thorough tutorial make it easy to play. If you tackle this solo, you can select either twin with ease. Yet, as a duo, you’ll adore the straightforward style and its uncomplicated ways.

Like many adventure RPGs, Young Souls oozes replay value. With many avenues to explore and lots of treasure to discover, this will keep you busy. Furthermore, there are several difficulty settings that’ll test newcomers and veterans alike. To complete this, you’ll need skill, patience, and at least 15 hours.

Young Souls is incredible.

The indie market is saturated, so to be noticed, you have to be special. Luckily, Young Souls is incredible and will entertain you immediately. What’s more amazing is its inclusion in the Game Pass subscription. Therefore, you can play this awesome game for nothing. I adored every moment and recommend you to buy it here! Will you save the day, or will the goblins take over? Attack every monster, gather the loot, and defeat Dwaverngobben. 

SUMMARY

Young Souls is an excellent adventure title with both hack' n' slash and RPG elements. Can you work together to save the professor, stop the goblins, and save the town? Scour each dungeon, grab as much loot, and use magic and brute force to be victorious.



+ Excellent comic book art style.
+ Wonderful cinematic.
+ Brilliant music and sound effects.
+ Easy controls.
+ Plenty of replay value.
+ Available on Game Pass.

- No acting to support the plot.

(Reviewed on the Xbox Series X. Also available on PC, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation.)
Daniel Waite
Daniel Waite
My gaming career started on an Amiga and spans many consoles! Currently, I game using an MSI laptop and Xbox Series X. A fan of every genre, I love to give anything a go. Former editor and reviewer for www.bonusstage.co.uk, I'm loving my new home here at Movies Games and Tech. I can be contacted for gaming reviews on the following email: Daniel@moviesgamesandtech.com

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Review: Young Souls<p class="has-text-align-justify" style="font-size:14px"><em>Young Souls</em> is an excellent adventure title with both hack' n' slash and RPG elements. Can you work together to save the professor, stop the goblins, and save the town? Scour each dungeon, grab as much loot, and use magic and brute force to be victorious.</p><br/> <br/> + Excellent comic book art style.<br/> + Wonderful cinematic.<br/> + Brilliant music and sound effects.<br/> + Easy controls.<br/> + Plenty of replay value.<br/> + Available on Game Pass.<br/> <br/> - No acting to support the plot.<br/> <br/> (Reviewed on the Xbox Series X. Also available on PC, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation.)<br/>