Whilst we like to dip our toes into other gaming formats from time to time, it’s the Xbox life that leads us. And up until now we’d never heard of In Celebration of Violence, let alone played it. That changes today with launch on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S.
Previously available on PC, Nintendo Switch and PS4, In Celebration of Violence comes to Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S to deliver players the chance to embark on a new adventure, one full of fantasy, action, roguelike elements, exploration and, well, murder.
Dropping out of the Dolores Entertainment team, In Celebration of Violence looks pretty nifty and it’s certainly something we’re looking forward to lending some of our time. It puts you in the role of the hero of the hour as they head off on the hunt for fun times (well, maybe not fun, but they don’t know this!), traversing large lands and navigating their way across plains, swamps, through cities and down into the darkest of dungeons. With a variety of paths and routes to take – all in the eventual hope of landing at the feet of a boss or two – In Celebration of Violence is going to be a dangerous, but ultimately rewarding trip.
Priced well at £9.99 (with a little launch discount dropping that down to a mere £7.99 for the first couple of weeks), should you be in the market for something new to really get your teeth into, this could well cover what you’re looking for. A range of weaponry is promised, as is loot and items, whilst the addition of mementos will change up what you thought you knew about In Celebration of Violence to deliver something altogether different.
With those roguelike elements ensuring that death is permanent, but also a way of advancing, and the chance to drag in some local friends for up to 4 player action, we’ve got some decently high hopes for what this can bring… if only as the amount of blood and gore on display is satisfyingly tempting.
It’s the world, the variety and the challenge which are the overriding aspects at play though, with each of those detailed as follows:
- The World – Large, procedurally generated and interconnected lands range from plains to swamps, to cities, to dungeons. These lands offer multiple paths to reach the variety of final bosses. Dungeons are a dangerous but rewarding risk. In dungeons you will have to move slowly and be on the lookout for traps and secrets while searching for the exit. Elements interact with each other and the environment. Fire reacts to the temperature, weather, and any flammable objects, especially people. Electricity will arc towards entities and is especially dangerous around water. The chances of rain or snow adjust organically to the area’s climate and can become both a hindrance and an advantage. The shrines of multiple gods litter the land. Players can choose to pray to shrines they come across to receive a variety of favors, bonuses, and items. One must choose carefully though; every god has a different price and some become displeased when their rival is the subject of worship. Some gods may also become angered by actions the player takes while adventuring, such as destroying foliage or killing civilians.
- Variety – Scores of weapons, items, spells, and mementos are scattered throughout the world to find. One may acquire a powerful enchanted ballista early into one life, only for the next to yield nothing more than a couple of wooden clubs. Mementos represent objects remembered from past lives and change the rules of gameplay. You may discover a memento that summons spiders from enemy corpses, improves your stats while on fire, or reverses the effects of death. There are multiple paths to victory. One could be nimble and stealthy, charge in waving a hammer, raise an army of undead, harness a variety of spells, manipulate enemies into traps or flames, amass resources to acquire the most powerful items, or simply play it safe with a sword and a shield. The various characters simply offer different starting points, every decision is your own.
- Challenge – No life is predetermined for success. The cheery graphics disguise a brutal and unyielding experience. Unforeseen obstacles will need to be dealt with in real time and even a regular enemy will be deadly if you’re not careful. To reach the end, players will need to demonstrate that they are able to consistently overcome these obstacles. Failure can halt or even reverse progress. As you accumulate experience, discover schematics, and defeat bosses you can become permanently better prepared to tackle future challenges. The choices and advantages a player has at the beginning of a playthrough will dramatically increase as they play. New characters, items, and bonuses are unlocked in ways that are only hinted at during gameplay.
We’ll be sure to get some hands-on for review purposes, letting you know how In Celebration of Violence plays on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. For now though let us leave you in the capable hands of the Xbox Store – it’s there where you’ll find the download you require.
In Celebration of Violence is a fantasy action roguelike of exploration and murder. Methodical combat requires that you plan your attacks, dodges, blocks, and parries while considering your opponents and the environment. Death is permanent but you can improve your stats and purchase items to aid future lives. And if things get too tough then up to four local friends can grab controllers and aid the hero as player-controlled monsters, zombies, and bandits.