[PlayStation 4] Swordbreaker Review
Swordbreaker from Sometimes You is an adventure in the style of the classic choose-your-own-adventure type of experience. Check out our Swordbreaker review!
Featuring over 300 different panels, each individually illustrated, Swordbreaker tells the story of a knight brought by fate to an abandoned castle. Armed only with your sword, armor, and a sword-breaker, you take on the quest for treasure and glory. Are you savvy enough to survive to the end of all of Swordbreaker’s branching paths? I do have to mention something: I love choose-your-own-adventure experiences. I grew up using dog ears to bookmark where I was in these books – a cardinal sin, I know – and couldn’t wait to get back to carrying on from where I left off.
Swordbreaker evokes all of these feelings in me. There is a lot of reading here, as each scene plays out as a text adventure where you decide what your character’s next action will be. Each run through Swordbreaker gives you three hearts. Lose them by making the wrong choice… and you’ll die. Due to the need for some trial and error to find the right options for each scenario, death will be part of the gameplay cycle. At least when you die, you’ll get to see an illustration that shows your outcome!
I definitely liked the illustrations used for each of the areas I visited, showcasing the different characters you’ll meet and the enemies that you will battle. You can press the Triangle button to remove the gameplay overlay to get a better look at the artwork. A lot of these illustrations are very detailed, which is why I was grateful that there’s a gallery option where I could check them out again. This section will also be a good way of checking how many scenes you’ve already experienced and how many you have left to find.
There are also a number of unexpected encounters as you play. I won’t spoil anything here, but I will say I found myself saying “WTF?” aloud more than once. The only complaint I have is that these moments were few and far between. I found myself coming back to the same room on subsequent runs, and the novelty of these encounters did lessen after seeing it for the fifth or sixth time. Eventually, it became a game of memorizing the correct solutions and soldiering on so that I could find a new sequence.
This game is a trophy hunter’s dream since once you find the right set of choices to make for this or that particular ending, you can go back and pick the other options at each fork in the story so that you can get the remaining trophies. If you know what you have to do, you can certainly unlock a new Platinum trophy for your collection in one afternoon. If you want to speed things up, there’s also the option of using a trophy guide, but I do suggest that you go into this one blind sop that you can get the most of your purchase.
Swordbreaker is a great choose-your-own-adventure experience, featuring great artwork and some unexpected story elements. While there is a lot of repetition since you have replay earlier story beats to find the new story branches that will take you down a different path, it’s not a deal-breaker. At only $4.99, this is an easy one to recommend to fans of this type of experience, especially if you’re also a trophy hunter.
This Swordbreaker review is based on a PlayStation 4 copy provided by Sometimes You.