The Last Hero of Nostalgaia | Windows PC Review
The Last Hero of Nostalgaia is an action adventure game developed by Over The Moon and published by Coatsink. It is currently available on Windows PC and Xbox, and for the purpose of my review I was playing the Windows PC version.
The Last Hero of Nostalgaia is a satirical adventure set in a place known as Nostalgaia which is the world of video games, unfortunately though, this world is collapsing, falling apart, and reverting backwards into oblivion. With the video game world in peril and on the brink of extinction, the last hope emerges and begins their battle to save Nostalgaia. There were others who came before our hero, but they failed and in turn, had to relinquish their memories. Some of them, however, refused and instead they hoarded the power that they had gained, refusing to release it back into the falling world meaning that they have become corrupt.
The game really was a treat for me. When I review, I tend to go in completely blind so that I have no bias or prior opinions before loading up for the first time. So, I’m sure you can imagine my surprise when I loaded into The Last Hero of Nostalgaia for the first time to discover that it's actually a Souls-Like and a parody of the genre. First and foremost, one of my absolute biggest fears was that the game would rest too much on the gimmick of it being a parody/satire and that the quality of the general gameplay and the environment would be poor, however, I was totally wrong. Throughout the game you will have the wicked tale told to you by a cynical and snarky narrator that instantly reminded me of The Stanley Parable. Throughout the game there are countless nods to FromSoftware games. I’ve played almost all of the Soulsborne games, however, I wouldn’t consider myself to be an expert in any sense of the word with regards to the lore, but even I was able to pick out many of the references myself. So I feel like people who are really invested in the lore of the Dark Souls games will pick up on even more of them than I did. Again, one thing that I really believe this game needs to be commended on is how it doesn’t just take advantage of the fact that it is a parody and in fact, in and of itself, it really is a fantastic game.
The Last Hero of Nostalgaia features a really interesting and fun art style and general aesthetic. It might not be anything special but within the context of this game, it just works so well. The game is 3D but the landscapes and such are built up of an almost pixel art style and throughout these landscapes you’ll find a variety of throwbacks to other video games with each region having its own unique look and feel to it. Each world has a main boss known as the Great Ones. These bosses vary in difficulty and pose different threats to you as a player and will certainly require some trying to defeat.
There is around a 10-15 hour play time here, obviously depending on the struggles you face. The difficulty genuinely intimidated me and didn’t interest me at all. I play video games to relax and not feel like I’m hitting my head off a brick wall repeatedly, however, last year that changed, and I suddenly decided to try and beat all the FromSoft games. Through this I discovered that the difficulty does not NEED to become infuriating. Instead it can become an exercise in patience and persistence and it will forever change your view of video games while opening up a whole new world of enjoyment for you if you connect with it. Without my prior interest in the FromSoft games and Souls-Likes in general, The Last Hero of Nostalgaia might not really have connected with me fully, but the gameplay loop and the combat instantly made sense to me and allowed me to just soak in the rest of the environment laid out for us. I wouldn’t necessarily say that The Last Hero of Nostalgaia is quite as challenging as the FromSoft games, but it certainly still packs a punch.
I found a lot to love within The Last Hero of Nostalgaia. I tend to go into every review game entirely blind because I don’t want any preconceptions about them and want to experience everything organically from my own perspective, and with The Last Hero of Nostalgaia it was such a wonderful surprise to see so many common elements with the Dark Souls games. It immediately felt familiar and fun but still posed enough of a challenge to be engaging for the duration of my gameplay. The subtle (and not so subtle) nods to other video games and franchises were a lovely touch. As previously mentioned, I really love the fact that some clear thought was put into this game and it didn’t just rest on the fact that it is satire and parody to be good. The Last Hero of Nostalgaia really has its own identity for me and in my opinion, has managed to hold its own in the world of Souls-Likes.
Lj’s Rating: 4 out of 5.
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Many thanks to Plan of Attack for supplying the review code.