I had the honor of playing Ren’s Demons I and I have to say that this game is beautifully crafted.
It is similar to Undertale in the sense of being its own meta-game and a role-playing game, but Ren’s Demons I is unique in its storytelling, visuals, and gameplay.
Ren’s Demons I is an absolute blast to play for RPG fans and has philosophical themes mixed well with clever storytelling that stands out from the modern games.
The writing is one of the best parts of the game. It starts off as the usual prophesied hero who will save the world and beat the demon lord. However as you play through the game, there are witty moments with 4th wall breaks and self-aware dialogue. I love Ren’s straightforward attitude and recognition of many RPG elements while everyone else around him is questioning his sanity. Your party members that can be recruited are basically archetypes of the usual RPG. Your cherished best friend is kind and compassionate, there’s an innocent and sweet child, a depressing edge-lord, a wise elder who imparts philosophical lessons onto you, etc. These are a couple of several allies you can recruit to your party to help you against the evil monsters in the world.
In terms of the actual plot, it’s an intriguing take on the “hero saves world from demon” story. The story isn’t afraid to break the 4th wall while blending it into the plot. Throughout the game, you fight in the name of the ever powerful Goddess to free humanity from the reign of the demons. It starts off simple but then it gets interesting when you finish only to repeat the eerily similar events in a seemingly never-ending cycle. The game starts to show its self-awareness and it leaves you wanting to find out more about this fantasy RPG world doomed to repeat itself. The game hinges heavily on this meta storytelling.
I love the battle system, it’s pretty quirky in that you use trial & error to figure out the correct solutions for each type of enemy. The minigames during combat are appreciated as well so it keeps you on your toes. The Martyrdom system is an interesting but welcome addition to the game as it encourages the player to make mistakes or try out as many choices even if they lead to failure. The game will let you immediately retry the event while awarding you a martyrdom point. You can spend these death points to make the game easier for yourself such as increasing the time it takes to dodge. Because of this system, you are free to try out as much options as you can without any serious punishment. In fact, it can be seen as essential for progressing through the story.
The game itself can be played at your leisure as it’s pretty non-linear and you pretty much get to go any way once you get some story stuff out of the way in the beginning. There will be thought bubbles with a question mark in them, these are encounters you can interact with to trigger events like fighting a monster or finding items. There are quite a decent amount of side content you can do to get powerful rewards to help you in your current adventure. The game encourages you to explore as much as you want such as interacting with the villagers in the human cities to finding solutions for each monster fight.
GRAPHICS & SOUNDS
I won’t say much about the graphics as it’s pretty minimalistic. The color schemes do a decent job of contrasting colors so you can tell which paths can be walked on or not. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I enjoy them or it might even grow on some people as they continue playing. For the main character sprites, the art is incredible as well as for the monster sprites when you empathize with them. The art style is reminiscent of the classic JRPG games and I’m all for it.
Music and sounds are utterly fantastic. I honestly did not expect Ren’s Demons I to have such great music. The crisp angelic choir singing in all their holiness, the smoothing strums of guitars, and even the battle music which again nails that classic RPG feeling. Props to whoever designed the sounds and music. I would be down to buy the soundtrack if there ever was one.
As much as I like Ren’s Demons I, there are a few things that might dampen the experience of others who wish to play it:
*For starters, the game’s save system is akin to a browser game which means that you’ll need to install a json file from the game to manually save. The game mainly operates on a pretty good auto-save system but there are moments in the game where you could miss out on content, so keep that in mind.
*Next is the fact that the game doesn’t seem to have a video setting for windowless gameplay, so you’ll have to deal with seeing the windows border when you play.
*Finally, the game is not bug-free so expect quite a few in advance. I do have faith in the developer to update and fix these bugs as they have done so in the coming months before release.
This is hands-down one of my favorite Indie RPGs in a while. Its gameplay system encourages you to interact and discover as much as possible to learn more about the environment. The game becomes more meta as you continue playing and seeing the story reveal itself through the breaks in the fourth wall. The game is not afraid to tell you that you’re playing a RPG and playing with the lives of the characters in this small world. I highly RECOMMEND Ren’s Demons I and I said that the asking price is absolutely worth it to play this game. Have a nice one my dudes!
You can purchase Ren’s Demons I through the Steam store page HERE!