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Masquerada: Songs and Shadows PS4 Impression - PAX East 2017


Masquerada: Songs and Shadows

Originally released on PC/Mac last year, Masquerada: Songs and Shadows is an RPG with interesting lore, set in a city insquired by Venice, and the Renaissance. Our reviewer found that the narrative worked well but found the gameplay a bit lacking. The game is slated to be released later this year on PlayStation 4 and possibly other consoles. I got to give the PlayStation 4 version a try, which was certainly a work in progress as there were occasional sound and framerate issues. When it was working fine, however, I found the combat to be fun and relatively easy to play with a DualShock controller.

The PlayStation 4 played similarly to BioWare games like Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and theh original Dragon Age allowing the player to pause the action at any time and carefully plan out the use of skills. The combat was fast and fun, but a bit too chaotic to my liking at times. The combat involves using various skills, hitting enemies with elemental attacks that then allow for more powerful follow up attacks. Overall it was a fun experience, particularly thanks to the interesting setting and superb voice acting.

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The art style especially drew my attention. Areas and characters look like they could have been pulled from classic paintings. Character animations and spell effects were well done and colorful, bringing a lot of the life to the world. The setting features a city where there is no religion, and the dead are remembered through special songs. All magic is contained within special masks, but the art of making them has been lost, so they've become rare and highly sought after items. The prologue I played did a great job of setting the stage for a civil war, and left me eager to player more of the game.

Masquerada: Songs and Shadows is currently available for Mac and PC. Details regarding its console release will be revealed at a later date.


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