Violet Wisteria (PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, X/S, PC)

Help a lady in an elegant dress wielding a sword fight off demons in this 2-D platformer hack and slash.  It reminds me of 16-bit titles like the Valis series.  Violet Wisteria is available on all current consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

Your character can run, jump, and slide.  The gameplay gimmick is there are three different types of slash attacks assigned to three different buttons.  And each of those attacks is assigned a color. The enemies you defeat are weak against one of those attacks, so you must use the right one.  It sounds confusing, and it kind of is.  But lucky there is an option for you to have an icon above their head to tell you which color slash to use against them.  If you hit them with the wrong attack, you’ll be bounced backwards.  Which is actually part of the gameplay because sometimes it’s the only way to cross larger pits.  There are also magic spells you can use and item boxes that can give you health, time, or the ability to destroy enemies with any attack temporarily.

There’s an acronym called K.I.S.S. which stands for “Keep It Simple, Stupid.”  And that’s the problem I have with this game.  The three color slash mechanic is too complicated.  Maybe if they reduced it to two, or honestly, not have it at all.  Sure that wouldn’t make the game very original, but it would’ve been a lot more fun.

Kid Factor

Violet Wisteria is rated E-10 with an ESRB descriptor of Fantasy Violence.  You hit enemies with a sword and they disappear when defeated, and when you lose all your energy, you just fall down.  Reading skill is helpful for the text, and younger gamers may find this one too difficult.

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