From the innovative and crazy creative independent developers at DrinkBox Studios comes Severed, a first-person dungeon crawler centered around a one-armed woman named Sasha whose goal (like most Harrison Ford movies in the 90s) is to get her family back after her home is ransacked (however, in this case, it was not by one-armed man).
Known for their quality selection of well received games for the PS Vita–a handheld console that isn’t famous for its games, and probably won’t have another great turn out for its short time left on the market–DrinkBox has previously put out Tales from Space: Mutant Blobs Attack as well as Guacamelee, both receiving critical acclaim, though perhaps a bit quiet due to the platform and small demographic they had been released for.
Severed highly relies on its touch screen function, as players can manipulate Sasha’s heavily wielded broad sword with swipes, taking out enemies or producing a series of parries. While not categorized as a role-playing game, it carries a few satisfying characteristics as your typical,hardcore RPG. As players progress, they are able to upgrade Sasha’s abilities or health by collecting body parts in a gruesome near-parody of collecting coins.
Gameplay is consistenly given good marks in reviews, with reviews raving about how developers seem to stress time managment throughout the game:
Battles in Severed are all about rhythm — learning how long it’s safe to let enemies stew without a slice — and choices. Do you pop off a few cuts to keep the eyeball from blasting, or do you try to kill the cluster of bats so you can stop worrying about their attacks? It’s immensely satisfying to fall into a groove, but that groove is slightly different with every battle.
Colorful and well-utilized graphics are also highly praised, some pointing out it compliments the flow of gameplay. Maps work similar, some reviewers pointed out, to Metroid styled discoery–ie: using a new ability to reach something you previously couldn’t (also ulutized in the popular Batman series, ala Batman Arkham Asylum).
With satifying touch screen combat, chellenging temple runs, exploration, upgrades, amazing story and grpahics, there really isn’t a lot to like about Severed. For the price of $15 USD on the Plasyation Vita, this game is more than worth the money.