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[Vita Review] Soul Sacrifice

Soul Sacrifice is arguably the best game I have ever played for the PlayStation Vita. This is Sony Computer Entertainment Japan’s answer to the popular “Monster Hunter” series. Keiji Inafune is well known for the Onimusha and MegaMan series that he created for Capcom. Now he’s back with this brand new IP for Sony.

Without giving anything away, the game is very mission based. You have your typical collect/find items and kill the boss type of scenarios. Instead of dinosaur type monsters, though, you wage battle with evil, demonic, trippy looking creatures. From Cerberus to a Harpy, even a possessed Rat. What’s impressive about this game is the character design and stages. The creatures that you fight are gloriously well drawn and animated. You gotta have some type of imagination to be able to think of these type of creatures. They do not look typical at all. A lot of reviews I read for this game just talk about the gameplay and multiplayer aspect, however there is more to it than that.

The narration is provided by voice actors throughout, and a book with a face named Librom talks to you before you start the game, which is downright original. There’s so much voice acting in this game that you don’t need to read the subtitles. If you played Metal Gear Peace Walker and were impressed by the moving artwork comics type of style, this game brings it to another level with superb voice overs and original drawings.

If you’re like me, with a ton of things to do besides play each video game that comes out, you’d probably jump right into multiplayer. Yes, I played about 2 hours of the single player missions, but multiplayer co-op is where this game shines brightly. You and 3 friends (or random people over the internet) go face to face destroying possessed souls. You have a choice of either saving or sacrificing the enemies you kill. Saving a soul grants you different attributes, while sacrificing a soul increases your magic. Choose wisely though, as leveling up one or the other has its pros and cons; I am doing the neutral way of playing this game. Instead of leveling up with the typical XP points, you level up your soul meter instead. You can be neutral and level up the blue and red meters equally, or be a punk ass and sacrifice every soul you kill. It is completely up to you.

You can fully customize your sorcerer. From clothing, to skin color, to the type of arm sigils you choose to enhance your magic. Each sigil grants you different boost to your magic or health. You can also craft more powerful magic or enhance existing magic by combining items. Some items you acquire by completing missions, while some have to be crafted. Throughout your gameplay, you will have the option of having other sorcerers to aid you in your missions. Be careful, as sacrificing some of the sorcerers that die in battle will make them null and you have to pay a bunch of Lacrima to make them usable again. You can equip up to two sorcerers to aid you in battle.

Another key addition, which I found very appealing, is the touch screen function. You can flip the pages of the book with the Vita’s screen. In the main menu, you can use the Vita’s on board directional sensor to move your handheld around and see a 360 degree view of your cage.

I would’ve loved to have seen the addition of a JUMP button. Everything feels grounded, as you can’t jump for some reason; like you have those magnetic boots Sean Archer was issued during his stay in Air One prison in the movie “Face/Off”. The lock-in camera is pretty strange at is has its tendency to shift fast or slow along with the creature you have locked onto, therefore messing up your point of view. Is it worth buying? Yes. Is it worth your time? Yes. Soul Sacrifice feeds your thirst for that PlayStation Vita game that you’ve been waiting for. It has action, lots of trippy creatures, crazy combat system, and lastly, a very engaging storyline that will have you coming back for more.

[review score=”89″ pros=”SUPER HIGH replay value
Co-Op missions over the internet are easy to find
Customization features are endless
Great voice acting” cons=”You cant jump
Quirky lock on camera system”]