The joy of events like EGX is discovering something new. While there were plenty of fantastic indie games to enjoy, the one that really stood out for me was The Spirit of the Samurai. This debut comes from an animation studio, Digital Mind Games; you can tell they have put so much expertise and love into every aspect.
The Spirit of the Samurai is a 2D action-adventure game with Metroidvania and Soulslike elements woven in. Set in feudal Japan, you play as one of three distinct characters (a warrior cat, a samurai, and a tree spirit) to fight your way through hordes of monsters steeped in Japanese folklore to save the world around you. With experience, you can improve skills, master different moves, and customise combos that work for your playstyle using the in-game combo maker. Each character allows you to explore and interact with the world in different ways, whether it’s more platforming and exploration or straight-up combat.
For the demo, you play as the samurai and get to experience some of that incredible combat. Pushing one of the directional joysticks with a unique control system performs combat moves. This makes it very easy to chain with button combos and parry and fight monsters coming at you from multiple directions. The combat was challenging, fast, and felt incredible. I’m looking forward to the game’s launch and being able to experience it in its full state. Be prepared to die a lot!
Visually, this game is a masterpiece. You can see the developer’s animation and visual storytelling prowess, Digital Mind. It has a stop-motion style about it and gives off Kurosawa movie vibes with the way it presents itself visually. It’s simply stunning. Movement is fluid, and the monsters feel unique in the way they move and attack you. The visual style translates to the world around you with incredible detail and atmosphere.
The Spirit of the Samurai releases on PC in 2024, and I, for one, cannot wait. For more information, head to their website.