A Reimagining of a Classic Story
It’s almost impossible for any studio besides FromSoftware to develop a solid Soulslike game. The only great ones not developed by FromSoftware I could name is Code Vein from 2019. I could now extend that exclusive list to include Lies of P, as it masterfully checks all the boxes required to be considered a quality Soulslike game.
Lies of P takes one of the most iconic works of Italian literature and uses it as the foundation for a Soulslike experience. The result is an unforgettable journey through a nightmarish world while having to overcome aversive obstacles.
Welcome to Krat
Inspired by Carlo Collodi’s masterpiece, players are transported to a Belle Époque world brimming with technological marvels. The discovery of Ergo empowered Geppetto to craft human-like autonomous machines known as “Puppets.” Guided by the Grand Covenant, a set of principles inspired by Asimov’s Laws, these puppets played a pivotal role. They elevate the city of Krat to a global pinnacle of economic prosperity and scientific marvels. However, an ominous force had turned the puppets into homicidal machines that have plunged Krat into a nightmarish dystopia. At the same time, a deadly illness is turning the few survivors into grotesque mutants.
The only hope for putting an end to this nightmare lies in Pinocchio, a unique puppet who possesses both the visage and emotions of a human. Upon being activated, a summons from Sophia beckons him to make his way to Hotel Krat. Here, under Geppetto’s guidance, he is entrusted with the solemn duty of bringing an end to the nightmare. Nevertheless, not everything seems to be what it appears and there is more going on from behind the shadows.
The Adventures of Pinocchio acts as the foundation for its world-building while also drawing inspiration from other works. Players will notice right away that classics like Bloodborne and BioShock have inspired the world of Krat. These works act as the inspiration for a whimsical and terrifying world. It’s because of these elements that allows Lies of P to captivate players into a journey rich in lore and mystery. Making the experience not just about survival but also learning more about the world and everything around you.
Rest and Rebuild
Lies of P is a Soulslike game, meaning that it will be difficult and brutal. It’s challenging and players will need to develop a method and style quickly if they want to progress. Those who are genre fans know exactly what I mean and will feel comfortable right from the start. The gameplay and combat mechanics will be easy to learn for those who enjoy Soulslike games. It’s the standard hack’n slash setup with RPG elements. A puppet alone will be easy to defeat but it’s when they are in groups that they pose the greatest threat. Mid-level enemies and bosses will put your skills truly to the test.
Players will have access to a variety of bladed weapons that can be customized through upgrades and mixing the blade with the handle. Players could save and fast travel at the Stargazers located throughout the world. Hotel Krat serves as the center of the world and the place players can upgrade everything. By everything, I mean your character, weapons, and gear. Pinocchio can also be upgraded with the Ergo collected, boosting health, stamina and other attributes.
Finally; what makes Lies of P unique is that Pinocchio is a puppet who can lie. Using this ability will play a critical role in one’s playthrough and the multiple endings. There are moments when lying could be advantageous or unlock hidden secrets. Yet, it will come at a price so one should tread carefully.
Right away, one should absolutely be aware of what a Soulslike game is before picking up Lies of P. If you’re not a fan then you will not enjoy the experience. It will put your skills to the test right from the start and the boss fights are a test of patience. At the same time, you might become annoyed by the lack of basic features. Most notably waypoints and a map, a design choice common in most Soulslike games.
Besides the Soulslike elements, one could get annoyed with the clunky combat mechanics. Too often I felt there was a delay in when I took action and the action actually happened. While attacks can be figured out quickly, dodging seems to suffer the most from this issue. Adding to the frustration is how your actions can be interrupted by an attack and the item or the charge is lost.
Becoming a Real Human
The last time I got to enjoy a great Soulslike game not developed by From Software was Code Vein back in 2019. Many have tried but very few have succeeded. Lies of P now joins a very exclusive list of quality Soulslike games not from the iconic studio. It hits all the right marks in regards to the gameplay while bringing to life a grim world inspired by a classic story.
Lies of P is a Soulslike experience that uses one of the most iconic works of Italian literature as the foundation for its world. It’s everything one could ask for in such a game along with a solid story and a world to explore.
Disclaimer: One PR Studio provided the game used for this review.
This review is the critique and thoughts of one writer. If you want to see how other critics felt then check it out on OpenCritic.
8Bit/Digi is an independent media outlet that provides insight into the gamer community of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Lies of P (PC)
- A reimagining of one of the most iconic works of Italian literature.
- Easy to learn gameplay for those who enjoy Soulslike games.
- Exploring the world of Krat.
- Player actions will have consquences on the story ending.
- Practically all the issues that come with a Soulslike game.
- Clunky combat mechanics.