Have you ever wanted to start a cult? Well, in ‘Cult of the Lamb’ you get to do just that! From Developers, Massive Monster, and publishers Devolver Digital, Cult of the Lamb is the single-player, action-adventure cult simulator you have been waiting for. Destroy your enemies, sacrifice your worshippers or go fishing? Running a cult is not always as easy as preaching a sermon or two, sometimes you have to make sure they have a place to sleep or a hole to bury unbelievers in! Gather your flock of woodland worshippers and let’s see what this game has in store for all you believers out there…
Your journey begins as an innocent sacrificial lamb called ‘Forth’, by the ‘The one who waits’ after you were recently sacrificed by your captors and given a new life. Now, tasked with starting a cult and helping release ‘The one who waits’ from their eternal prison, you must lead the way. This is no simple task, as you must seek out new worshippers, build and maintain a comune, and focus on your holy crusade to finally release your savor and defeat the four evil Bishops of the old faith.
The game has 4 difficulty settings for you to choose from; Easy, Medium, Hard, and Extra Hard. Depending on what difficulty you choose will affect a number of variables such as player/enemy health, how often pickups are available, and follower faith levels, just to name a few. Medium difficulty is pretty well-rounded and a preferred choice, but if you enjoy rogue-like games, I recommend giving Hard, or Extra Hard a shot.
The game highly recommends using a controller but can also be played with a keyboard and mouse. As for the gameplay mechanics, controls are easy to navigate, as are the game world’s environments. At first, the game seemed like a straightforward hack and slash through enemies to eventually defeat the boss at the end but having a cult to maintain takes a fair bit of planning.
You will be making sure members have somewhere to sleep, food to eat, and you will need to keep morale high so they can keep worshiping you so you can get stronger to defeat the many enemies you encounter. More cult members are needed to unlock new areas, along with helping maintain your cult. Not to forget, sacrificing a few of them is highly recommended; sometimes to not just make you more powerful but to keep that morale high.
Sacrificing also helps upgrade buildings and your abilities, to help gain more powerful spells and weapons on your “Crusades”. So unlocking buildings such as better houses or farm plots to help feed your flock is a big help. Also making sure you keep your followers busy doing tasks such as gathering food, wood, or even pray, all help towards these upgrades.
Going on ‘Crusades’ is your main objective as you must defeat the bosses to free ‘The one who waits’. Each “Crusade” is broken up into multiple paths, so depending on what you want to focus on, choosing a path where you get more wood or gain an extra follower can benefit your cult. If you die during one of these “Crusades”, do not fret as death is only a distraction, as you will be resurrected back at your cult with just fewer resources you collected during that “Crusade”. You are not limited to dungeons to explore as many other areas are opened up over time on the world map.
A lighthouse with a nice place to fish is one of the many places that can be uncovered. When you want to take a break from your culty duties or from another “Crusade”, you can relax in a number of ways. Many great aspects of the game are that it’s not just one genre of a game, it’s a fun balance of rogue-like, action-adventure, and building that blend beautifully from fast-paced action to a relaxing building sim. It’s a huge quality that shines in the gameplay of the game.
“Holy Talismans” can also be found during your “Crusade” and can be given as gifts to boost your followers with special buffs to make sure no follower in your flock is weak. This is due to the fact that your followers can have traits that can either hinder or improve your cult depending on the circumstances.
Another fun quality that shines through is the game’s animation and style. Its colorful cartoon art style just works well with the theme of the game, especially with the Lamb, as the main protagonist. Along with all the variety of animals from the forest to the sea, the fantastic whimsical look and feel of the game’s aesthetics to it is a swift juxtaposition when you add the demonic splash of ritualistic sacrifice now and then.
Not to mention, the game’s fantastic musical score is composed by Melbourne-based, Narayana Johnson, AKA River Boy. Using music to set the atmosphere from the calm, happy fun of your cult commune to the dark brooding and intense danger of the monster-ridden forests and dungeons is nicely done. This can explain why I feel like a cult member sometimes and found it hard to leave the commune, I could just spend time building and blessing my subjects rather than face the monsters of the old faith.
In the end, I can say ‘Cult of the Lamb’ is a funny, cute, and highly enjoyable game that makes me want to sell my soul to ‘The one who waits’. Its ability to be action-packed with a peppering of a building simulator gives players the best of both worlds. Now excuse me, while I figure out how to start my own cult.
- Fun gameplay
- Game animation
- You get to run a cult
- Wish there was a mode that just lets me build a cult