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SolSeraph

For Heaven’s Sake

Alex Spencer

Once upon a time – so the legend goes – there was a game called ActRaiser. This was the SNES era, so long ago now it is remembered only by the ancients, but the scrolls tell us that ActRaiser was a title unlike any other at the time.

Because, really, this was two games in one. A side-scrolling action platformer and a top-down citybuilder, all tied together by a story about a deity fighting back demons and helping early man along the path to civilisation. A literal god game.

A thing about mythology, though? It always moves in cycles – and so once more we return, with SolSeraph. The name might have changed, but don’t be fooled: this is as close to a modern ActRaiser remake as Sega can manage without risking the wrath of some immortal copyright lawyer. Once again it’s half hack-and-slash and half build-and-defend, and once again you’re playing a god. Or, technically, a demigod. You know, like Maui from Disney’s Moana or Hercules from, um, Disney’s Hercules.

The game starts, of course, with a creation myth. Turns out Earth Mother and Sky Father made this world, but decided not to stick around and see how it all panned out, leaving a second wave of younger, surlier gods to step into their sandals. Jealous of mankind, this petty pantheon are taking revenge in the form of floods and plagues of demons. Which is where you – Helios, Knight Of Dawn, Basher Of Assorted Nasties – come in.

Raise hell

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October 2019

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