By Taylor Rodriguez
The Greek mythology-themed, rogue-lite “Hades” was released September 17, 2020 by Supergiant Games for Microsoft Windows, macOS, and the Nintendo Switch.
This new addition to the wide array of rogue-ish games available online features many appealing features and enjoyable content. “Hades” has a great story based on Greek mythology, a fantastic original score and soundtrack, as well as infinite fun and challenging replayability found in rogue-like and rogue-lite games.
There is a wide cast of enjoyable and witty characters ranging from bashful underworld servants to the overbearing gods of Olympus, and you can interact with all of them.
You play the game as Zagreus, the estranged child of Hades, God of the Dead. Zagreus and Hades have a rough relationship throughout the story of “Hades” that results in many comical interactions between the two.
As the story progresses, Zagreus discovers secrets his Father has kept from him regarding his birth mother. It then becomes his goal to escape the underworld to uncover these secrets and find the truth.
Throughout your journeys in the underworld, you come across various gods and goddesses who aid in your trip through the various realms of the underworld—more on that in a minute.
In addition to the figures found in Olympus, we are visited by some other characters, including Maegara, First of the Furies. You may also recognize characters like Achilles or Sisyphus along your journeys.
In “Hades,” you can gift Ambrosia, the nectar of the gods, to each and any of these characters to receive gifts that will aid you in your journey. Doing so also reveals a little more about the world of ‘Hades.’
Well, how exactly does one escape from the God of the Dead’s realm? By battling their way out, of course.
Each attempt to escape the underworld starts with you sneaking out of Hades’ house as if you were sneaking out to a late-night party. You battle your way up in an isometric, hack-n-slash style bullet hell of enemies, projectiles and explosives.
You move through the labyrinth-like Underworld toward the mortal realm step by step, encountering stronger and stronger foes until you reach the mortal realm.
To help you along the way are your cousins, aunts and uncles in Olympus. As you battle up through the underworld, you encounter ‘boons’ offered by your various Olympic family members.
These boons can range from damage bonuses, speed bonuses and even give you the powers of the gods themselves. Who will you pick? Do you have a favorite aunt or uncle? Maybe you will discover a combo you think is strong and favor one deity over another.
Accompanying these attempted escapes is a collection of beautifully composed tracks by Darren Korb. My personal favorite is “In the Blood.”
Each piece is a wonderful collection of orchestral instruments, helping tell the story of Zagreus’ journey to the mortal realm. Korb has done a fantastic job helping set “Hades” tone outside of the already stellar artwork and storytelling.
That is another aspect I want to talk about, the artwork. Hades has a style, unlike any other game that I’ve seen so far. The mix of 2D and 3D elements mixed with greek mythology creates a sense of urgency when playing.
It makes you want to look at every little detail, nook, and cranny and absorb every little detail as you attempt to break out of the Underworld.
But don’t take it from me, check ‘Hades’ out for yourself. The rogue-lite dungeon crawler can be found on Steam for $25. For a decent price, ultimate replayability, amazing story, beautiful art, extravagant music and atmosphere ‘Hades’ creates a 10/10 experience.