Skul: The Hero Slayer | Nintendo Switch Review
Updated: Nov 19
Skul: The Hero Slayer is a side-scrolling, indie roguelite that was developed by SouthPAW Games and published by Neowiz Games, and is available on Windows PC, PlayStation, XBox, and Nintendo Switch. For the purpose of my review I was playing the Nintendo Switch version in handheld mode.
When I first fired up Skul: The Hero Slayer, I was very much expecting a side-scrolling metroidvania and I didn’t really get along with it initially, however after a few runs and deaths I quickly realised that it was in fact, a roguelite! Skul: The Hero Slayer tells the story of a skeleton, Skul, who is a soldier in the Demon King's Army. The Demon King has been overthrown and it becomes the job of Skul and his comrades to take on the person who struck down their leader.
As I previously mentioned, Skul: The Hero Slayer is a roguelite meaning that everytime you die you are taken right back to the beginning however you carry over your points that are used to upgrade your character meaning that on your next attempt, Skul is a little but stronger than the time before. Each of the various locations that you’ll travel through all have a very unique visual design along with unique enemies that you’ll have to defeat along the way. Unfortunately, I’m still nowhere near good enough to have beaten the game yet however I’ve now spent about 15 hours in the game and can’t seem to stop myself from picking it up to make a few attempts at progressing a little further than I already have.
Whilst game skill is certainly important it's always important to remember that when playing roguelites you're very much reliant on building your strategy properly to revolve around whatever the game hands you at that moment. Whilst I’m still working on grasping what these strategies are exactly, I know how valuable strategy is in roguelites as I’m slowly but surely escaping my crippling Hades addiction. In my experience with Hades I started to learn ways you could force RNG to play ball; ways you can encourage certain items or boons to appear or the best doors to choose at what exact moment depending on what you were looking for. A similar experience can be found within Skul: The Hero Slayer.
For someone who isn’t incredibly well versed in roguelites, apart from Hades, Skul: The Hero Slayer is a real challenge however a totally welcome one. It may just be me and my lack of experience but I feel there is a real challenge found inside. I don’t see me managing to complete the game anytime soon, so for me this really speaks to value for money when you consider just how many hours of gameplay you could potential find yourself getting from Skul: The Hero Slayer. I know from my Hades experience that I have more than gotten my money's worth already with 150 hours put in and still climbing. There's just something so rewarding about roguelites that I don’t really find in many other genres of game and it's amazing to find other roguelites that I really engage with and appreciate.
Overall, I find Skul: The Hero Slayer to be a really charming and entertaining roguelite with really well done 16-bit visuals. The gameplay is strong and does a great job of keeping you engaged and challenged. As typical with roguelites, the story really takes a backseat here and felt slightly insignificant to me but this barely detracted from the experience.
Lj’s Rating: 4 spooky skulls out of 5.
For more information on Skul: The Hero Slayer please use the following links...
SouthPAW Games - Developer | Twitter
Many thanks to Team Critical Hit for the Review Key.