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F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch


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I thought that trailer made it look really quite boring and generic but then a metroidvania kind of is generic as that's the genre 🤔


Be interested to hear what people think if they do get involved, didn't really float my boat from that trailer for whatever reason. 


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I was playing it for review last week. It looks nice, there's plenty of it, and the level design is good and varied.


But I found the controls a little imprecise and the combat quite irritating a lot of the time. Too much stuff going on at once to keep track of it, and not enough space to avoid it all. It really feels like the dash move should dodge through attacks and enemies, but it doesn't...


until very late in the game. At which point it proves the point by becoming more fun.


I wouldn't say it was very hard, but it wore me down with lots of little annoyances, and there's no way to adjust difficulty. One for the patient player.

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Quick trial over lunch: it seems decent. You can switch controls over from stick to d-pad in the settings and there's an option to fall back to the original Chinese voice overs with English subs. Controls are OK, but combat hasn't clicked completely yet. I know how it works, but there doesn't seem to be a flow in there. There's no way to counter/dodge attacks and shots other than jump and move, while the fluidity of the combos implies there should be some kind of reaction move thing going on there. It's not a dealbreaker but feels rather old school for the type of combat.


Picked up one additional upgrade and a few skills from the skilltree. So far it's more of a path to follow than a maze to explore, but it really feels like I'm still doing the intro, so hopefully that opens up.


In terms of graphics it suffers a bit from the "everything and the kitchen sink" approach that non-Japanese Asian developers seem to be fond of. There's so much detail and stuff going on, that it can look quite garish despite being impressive. Also it's Unreal based, so texture pop-in is a thing.


All in all a bit more approachable than something like Ender Lilies, but not quite a Guacamelee. Yet.

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Spent some more time with it.


It's now very akin to Guacamelee. Focus on combat moves with hints of DMC and big bold doors telling you what move to use on it. On the flip-side there's combat that simply isn't as polished. Not having a proper dodge/block (you do get a pair of limited use tonfa, but they use the same energy as your "estus flasks" rendering them spectacularly useless) really hampers combat. Considering your enemies can dodge roll through you at times, it really feels like you should get this ability at some point in the game, but so far it just wants you to evade enemies like you're in a Mario platformer. Enemies however are far less complex than they might let on, and so far nothing apart from an early cameo by a boss character, seems to be able to counter hanging back with a charged punch and poking them at the end of their combos. It's slow but very effective.


Aside from that, the game is opening up nicely giving you environments that you can revisit if wanted and plenty of nice side routes to rummage through. (So it's definitely not a Guacamelee 2 in that respect.) I'd say get it if you liked Guac and would like a wholly different take on that template flavour.

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