Stories: The Path Of Destinies’ release today kind of flew under the radar and went unnoticed, but fear not, for I took notice of something I hoped would have a strong emphasis on storytelling—and I was right. Stories: The Path Of Destinies combines the combat system of a beloved dungeon crawler with the storytelling of an RPG and creates this wholly satisfying experience complete with beautiful environments.
The story in the game had me totally consumed from the moment a very unexpected event happened in the opening scene of the game—I won’t say what so I don’t spoil it for you. At that moment I thought, “Okay, this game is not messing around when it comes to storytelling.” I almost didn’t believe it happened at first. The game has constant narration that reads like a novel and rather than have the characters directly speaking, they have quotes with “he said” or “she said” after each. So in a way you could call it a very interactive book.
You take control of Reynardo as you stumble through a number of different tales depending on which decisions you decide to make. Reynardo is a sky corsair who controls his own airship, and travels to several of the universe’s floating islands. The developers designed the game after a fantasy story, and with tales of flying islands and scary enemies, it’s easy to get lost in all of the fantastic mayhem each story weaves. Check out the trailer below.
The most interesting part of the game is the decision system. You didn’t think a game with the word “Path” in the title would elude a decision-based gameplay system, did you? Indeed, the player is in control of Reynardo’s destiny, for every decision you make in the game affects the outcome of the story and leads you to other stories. For as much as I loved choose-your-own-adventure books as a kid, I have really been enjoying this trend in video game storytelling that involves the player having to make a choice that would in turn affect the gameplay. Games like Beyond: Two Souls, Life Is Strange and Until Dawn have been wildly successful because of it. And I feel like it’s no different in Stories: The Path Of Destinies.
The art style in the game along with the design of environments is absolutely gorgeous. As the player, play as Reynardo looking down on his character from the sky, a lot like the cameras in Diablo and Torchlight work. Some publications have already been relating it to the wildly successful game, Bastion, which boasts a unique art style, a killer soundtrack and an unforgettable story.
I need to just take a moment and congratulate the writers of Spearhead Games who slaved to bring the stories in this game to life. Having worked on a multiple-story system in a massively multiplayer online role-playing game, I can relate to the frustrations of double-checking each storyline, connecting the voices of the characters so they are seamless in different timelines and never losing that magic that rests in the writing. And what’s even more impressive is they didn’t just write dialogue, no, they wrote an entire story with transitions and descriptions and everything.
So if you’re looking for a game to pick up on your down team and would like to invest yourself in something a little more time-consuming, I highly recommend Stories: The Path Of Destinies, because you’re never going to know what your outcome will be until you make a decision.
This review based on a PS4 copy of the content provided by the publisher.
Platforms: PlayStation 4, PC
Developer: Spearhead Games
Publisher: Spearhead Games