Are you ready to explore the darker side of gaming? Look no further than Cult of the Lamb, the latest indie game to hit the market. This unique game blends a mix of base management and action-rogue-lite, which takes players on a journey through a mystical world filled with cults, sacrifices, and a dash of dark humor. After being saved by an ancient evil, you are tasked with forming and growing your Cult while going on savage pilgrimages to destroy the mystical council that locked your new godly patron away. You will navigate through challenges and make decisions that will ultimately determine the fate of your followers and how powerful you can become along the way. With stunning graphics, an immersive storyline, and a twist on the traditional role-playing game, Cult of the Lamb is a must-play for any gamer looking for a thrilling adventure. Join me as I delve into the twisted world of Cult of the Lamb and uncover what makes this game so captivating.
Cult of the Lamb is a top-down action role-playing game that puts you in the shoes of a cult leader, where you are expected to guide your followers through their daily lives, performing sermons and rituals, keeping them fed, and punishing those who stray from the faith. The game's mechanics are simple and intuitive, making jumping in and playing easy. You move around the map using the arrow keys and interact with objects and characters using the spacebar. Combat is also simple, with a basic and special attack that can be unlocked as you progress through the game.
Overall, the gameplay and mechanics of Cult of the Lamb are simple but effective. The ability to recruit new followers and make decisions that affect the fate of your Cult adds an extra layer of strategy to the game, making it more than just a simple hack-and-slash RPG.
Cult of the Lamb resembles rogue-lite dungeon crawlers like Hades or Curse of the Elder Gods, which first brought me to it but should not be compared too closely to them. The short runs of about 10 minutes are the norm in Cult of the Lamb, and each playthrough is randomized and repeatable. At the start of each run, you will be given a choice of two weapons to start you on your way. Through the game, you will be sent to four different areas, each with themes and quirks, leading to a monster boss fight at the end of each. The progression reminded me of other rouge-lites I have played before, choosing your path for gain with the element of chance always taking me to unexpected complications.
Those short journeys weren't all bad, but I spent most of the time it took me to beat the game, construct my base, accomplish small tasks for NPCs, and only go out when I had nothing left to do at home. Therefore, being in this good company, I found that my decisions when on the hunt were affected mainly by the wants of my cultists, who were toiling away at home instead of it being the opposite.
It's undeniable that the combat in this game is fun. It's not particularly intricate, with only a single attack button, a special "curse" power, and a dodge-roll at the player's disposal, but each of these elements is honed to a high level. The dodge is incredibly slick, allowing gamers to quickly evade the telegraphed strikes of their enemies as they make their way through rooms packed with cultists and monsters. Additionally, the various weapons, curses, and tarot card-based buffs that can be discovered throughout the campaign allow adding a little variety to each new outing as they approach the story's completion.
A major downside of Cult of the Lamb is that you are assigned a random weapon and curse at the beginning of every run, giving you no control over which ones you receive. The default sword and axe are usually the best choices, however, the hammer and gloves are ineffective against Cult of the Lamb's nimble opponents since most of their damage is done on the last hit of an attack combo. Moreover, some curses can be a potent area of effect attacks, while others lack the same potency. Finally, as runs are pretty short, you don't have the opportunity to find an adequate replacement for a curse or weapon that doesn't suit you. This can be very frustrating and certainly tested my patience on several occasions.
Although the number of choices for attacks is limited, you can customize your kit during a run through tarot cards. These bonuses can range from increased health to giving your melee attack a projectile to making enemies drop fish on death. Most of the cards enhance stats like weapon damage by 20%, which does not significantly alter one's playstyle, but finding a card that doubles the attack speed of the axe is an exciting treat.
Finding a powerful card might make it too easy to beat the boss battles on the standard difficulty. The bosses can be both visually and mechanically interesting, but if you're experienced with roguelike action games, it's recommended to increase the difficulty to Hard. This way, you'll be able to appreciate the clever designs of the bosses instead of just pressing the attack button to win on your first attempt.
Despite their intimidating looks, the Cult of the Lamb's opponents can be turned into cute allies after they are defeated, who can then be welcomed into the Cult. The action-packed parts of the game act as a vehicle for the story, but the actual progress lies in the base construction. The storyline of Cult of the Lamb is dark and twisted but also surprisingly humorous. As a newly formed cult leader, you must navigate a world filled with rival cults, demons, and other supernatural beings. The game's story is filled with unexpected twists and turns, keeping you on the edge of your seat throughout the entire game.
However, it's important to note that your choices throughout the game will affect your followers' loyalty. You must balance the needs of your followers with your own desires, making difficult decisions that can have dire consequences. This adds more depth to the game's story and characters, making it more than just a simple RPG. At the outset, you'll be doing a lot of the work yourself, but it's a rewarding experience to witness your base develop as you accumulate more loyal followers. Your base and your Lamb have tech trees that open up new structures for you to build or new capabilities and weapons to acquire. Over time, you can delegate mundane tasks like watering the farms to your followers, and even more, exciting options become available, such as sending them on expeditions for resources or temporarily transforming them into demons to help you fight.
This game has a lot to offer, and I had fun managing my followers' faith, hunger, and cleanliness levels. However, as the cult membership grew, keeping track of who was doing which task and who had already been "blessed" for the day became difficult. It wasn't necessary to worry about that once better facilities were available, but I still wanted to optimize my enterprise. Unfortunately, I felt some frustration when I couldn't.
The game offers great control with its cosmetic options, which are more plentiful than its functional ones. For example, you can shift buildings in your camp, customize the look and name of your followers, and adorn each corner of the space with decorations that must usually be acquired as you progress. Although making the most of these options is not required, doing so gave me greater ownership over my Cult. I even developed a preference for some of them and felt sorrow when they died of age or if I had to use them in a sacrifice.
Graphics Worth Dying For
Cult of the Lamb impresses by embracing the silliness of its theme and accompanying it with stunning visuals. Players can find all sorts of creatures in its world, from elephants to unicorns to bizarre spiders.
Cult of the Lamb's art style and graphics are stunning. The game features a mystical world filled with vibrant colors and intricate details. Each character and enemy is beautifully designed, with unique animations and abilities that make them stand out.
Overall, the art style and graphics of Cult of the Lamb are top-notch. The attention to detail, lighting, and shadows create a beautiful and immersive world you won't want to leave.
The Sound of Sacrifice
The soundtrack and ambiance of Cult of the Lamb are equally impressive. The game's music perfectly complements the dark and twisted world with haunting melodies and eerie sound effects that will send shivers down your spine.
The game's sound effects are also top-notch, with each attack and ability having a unique sound that adds to the immersion. The ambient noise of the game's world is also well done, with the chirping of crickets and the rustling of leaves creating a sense of realism.
Overall, the soundtrack and ambiance of Cult of the Lamb are excellent. The haunting melodies and eerie sound effects perfectly complement the game's dark and twisted world, creating an immersive experience that will stay with you long after playing.
I've found that there is far more to be done than I expected. The map is expansive, with several distinct locales hosting a variety of shops, NPCs to interact with, and missions to complete. Minigames like fishing and dice-rolling and more difficult sidequests bring one back to already-explored areas. Additionally, there are various secrets to be uncovered, and the character designs throughout the map are unique and exciting.
Overall, Cult of the Lamb is a must-play for any gamer looking for a thrilling adventure. I give it a 9/10. I think the one thing missing was a compelling and fun endgame. Once you finish the story and the platinum, I didn't find much to keep me coming back. It isn't something I expected, but I think once I finished, I was looking for more, kind of what I got from Hades and Slay the Spire. The game's unique storyline, characters, and mechanics will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. So if you're looking for a unique and engaging indie game, look no further than Cult of the Lamb.