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Blasphemous is the next 2D Dark Souls-like to watch

Pixelated death is almost a certainty

Russ Frushtick is the director of special projects, and he has been covering the world of video games and technology for over 15 years. He co-founded Polygon in 2012.

The Metroidvania genre doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon. Blasphemous seems to lean heavily into the roots of Castlevania, Dark Souls and, yes, Metroid, with its emphasis on exploration, character development, and comically large bosses.

Blasphemous is being made by The Game Kitchen, a studio that previously saw success with The Last Door, a series of point-and-click adventure games. While those games utilized 8-bit-style, low resolution pixelation, Blasphemous seems more inspired by the SNES era, with its increased level of detail. With that detail comes surprisingly well animated decapitations and body vivisections that would make a Mortal Kombat fan blush.

In the trailer we catch a few glimpses at the environments, which seem appropriately gloomy and skull-ridden. We also see some of the game’s boss fights, including a giant, blind, plant baby, and a giant melting face with flaming hands. Mostly a lot of giants.

We also get a look at some character customization, with skill trees to unlock a handful of special moves and abilities. It doesn’t appear to have the countless customization options of most Souls games. Instead it seems to be following the model of last year’s God of War or this year’s Sekiro, where a baseline ability set is enhanced with major upgrades.

Outside of the brief trailer, details about Blasphemous remain limited. The game is currently listed as “coming soon,” with Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, and Xbox One versions planned.

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