Othercide review for Xbox One, PS4, Switch

Platform: Xbox One
Also on: PS4, Switch, PC
Publisher: Focus Home Interactive
Developer: Lightbulb Crew
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No

If you play Othercide, you?re going to die, and you?re going to die frequently. It has nothing to do whether you?re any good at tactical RPGs or not. It?s how the game is designed.

To back up a little, the story — as I understood it — behind Othercide is that you?re playing as Mother, the greatest warrior who ever lived, in a war against an entity called Suffering, who?s trying to bring about the end of the world. To battle Suffering, you send your Daughters into battle. To do that, you need to ?germinate? new daughters constantly so you can regularly replenish your army and have enough troops at your disposal.

Which brings us back to the aforementioned frequent death. See, there are constant autosaves here, and there?s no way around it. The game even tells you from the get-go that deaths are permanent, and that you?ll need to build up quite an army to take what the game throws at you. As I said: you?re going to die in this game, a lot. The good news is that you at least get to carry over some of your progression from battle to battle, so you don?t have to start from scratch.

The bad news? You?ll have to go through lots and lots and lots of battles that will feel kind of similar pretty quickly. Admittedly, Othercide is also a roguelike, so the battlefields change every time, but because everything is so dark here — by design, as an aesthetic choice — you don?t notice the variety the way you might in a game that?s a little more colourful.

There?s some irony in writing this, because Othercide?s look is also one of its biggest selling points. It?s very gothic, all shades of black and white to help bloody splashes of red stand out even more. While it may lose some impact during the levels — roguelike or not, as I said, they look awfully similar — it makes for some very striking cutscenes.

While I?m not usually a huge fan of tactical RPGs, I can totally see how fans of the genre would get a lot out of this game. Between the roguelike nature of the levels and the fact you?re basically creating your army from scratch, no two playthroughs of Othercide will ever be quite the same. Provided you?re cool with dying a lot, that makes for a pretty unique experience.

Focus Home Interactive provided us with a Othercide Xbox One code for review purposes.

Grade: B