[Nintendo Switch] Sword Of The Necromancer Review
Sword of the Necromancer pays homage to The Legend of Zelda series… as you bring back the dead! Check our Sword of the Necromancer review!
Sword of the Necromancer from Grimorio of Games is a top-down action RPG on Nintendo Switch that pays homage to The Legend of Zelda series. The game focuses on Tama’s quest to try and revive Koko, who died under her watch. You’ll learn more about the story of Tama and Koko by way of cutscenes presented as you progress through the dungeon. These feel similar to what you’d get in a visual novel, and feature voice acting in English to help you get a better read on their personalities.
Your adventure will begin once you enter a short tutorial dungeon, where you’ll get to learn all of the basics. You’ll move Tama with the left analog stick or the D-Pad, using the ZL or ZR buttons to quickly dash out of harm’s way – or to cross small gaps. The weapons, items, and monsters under your command – more on this below – will be mapped to the a, B, X, and Y buttons. When you find a treasure chest, you’ll need to stop in front of it so that you can get the prompt to press and hold the A button to open it up collecting its contents. If you press and hold a button assigned to a weapon, you’ll charge up to unleash a more powerful attack, or will prepare a long-range attack, as is the case of the different bows you’ll find.
After completing the tutorial dungeon, you’ll gain access to the titular sword. When you try to use its power to revive Koko, you’ll learn that the sword requires additional power to be able to bring someone like her back to life. How do you learn this? Because the necromancer itself will tell you about it! The solution? Explore the dungeon and find the necromancer. The good news is that the sword can be used to revive the enemies you defeat, so that you can add them as companions! Just stand on top of their corpse, press and hold the A button, and add them to your group! To do this, you’ll need to slot the revived monster to one of the four items slots, which means you can’t just have a big group of monsters following you while you carry around the sword, bow and arrow, a health potion, and an amulet to protect you.
This was certainly an issue at the game’s launch, since only having four slots that need to be shared between monsters, items, and accessories greatly limited what you could do for each run of Sword of the Necromancer. The good news is that things are different now that the team heard everyone’s feedback and got to work on a new patch that added a very important element: an item bag! This will allow you to carry an additional four monsters, items, or accessories, which you can swap into play as needed. Do keep in mind that monsters in the item bag won’t gain experience and recover health, and accessories won’t be properly equipped until you place them on an active slot.
As you defeat monsters, you’ll gain experience points, which will be added to the green experience bar that is located right below your character’s name. Once the bar is full, Tama will level up. This will award her with a boost to hit points and to soul, which is used, for example, for dashing/evading enemy attacks. There are also other stats for you to consider. Attack will determine how much damage you deal, and magic attack will be used to boost the damage of attacks of a magical nature. Defense will lower how many hearts you lose with every attack you receive. There will also be elemental damage and defense stats to keep in mind, so that you can stay alive as you explore the dungeon in search of the necromancer.
Since you only have four active slots – and the four extra slots in the item bag – for using weapons, items, and monsters. as well as to equip items that will boost your defense and magical defense – or even curse your character and lower its attack and defense – you will need to make good use of the chest in the main hub for the game. The chest can store up to 12 items and monsters, for a total of 20 slots between the chest and Tama’s inventory and item bag. There’s also the option of searching for QR codes in real-life that you can then input in the treasure chest screen to add new items, weapons, equipment, and monsters to your arsenal, which will definitely be very useful at the start of your journey.
Defeating enemies and destroying vases and boxes will sometimes leave behind resources you can collect to use them back at the hub to power up your equipment. Depending on the essences and shards you manage to obtain, you can use the forge at the main hub to add an elemental attribute to a weapon, to boost attack, soul, or hearts that Tama has, or to improve it by adding a chance for its attacks to inflict additional status to your enemies. For example, if you collect 25 fire essences and 16 shards of ailment, you can add burn 5% to a weapon, so that it has a 5% chance of inflicting burn to an enemy when you land an attack.
Given the game’s roguelite nature, when you die inside of the dungeon, you’ll be brought back the main hub area. Any weapons, items, and enemies that were in your inventory will be lost, and your total level will also be halved. The good news is that you won’t lose anything you’ve managed to store in the treasure chest on the main hub and that, as long as you make some progress during each run into the dungeon, you’ll slowly be making some progress as you gain more levels than the ones you lose when defeated. Beat the floor’s boss, and you’ll get a chance to return to the main hub to change your equipment and save your progress.
Sword of the Necromancer does a good job at giving us a top-down action RPG with a general old-school The Legend of Zelda vibes, with the replayability and challenge of a roguelite. Now that the game has an item bag that provides an extra four slots for carrying around more monsters, items, and accessories, the whole “revive monsters to fight by your side” thing rings true, making for a fun gameplay loop. Sword of the Necromancer is out on Nintendo Switch with a $14.99 asking price.
This Sword of the Necromancer is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Grimorio of Games.