Death’s Door Review – A Murder Of Crows

After each of the challenging, climatic boss fights in Death’s Door, you’re forced to sit through a brief eulogy for the foe you’ve just slain. Sombre music plays as a gravedigger arrives to fulfill his duty, summerizing your enemy’s actions–good and bad–while also throwing in a joke or two for levity. Death’s Door doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it always finds interesting ways to make a point about the unending cycle of life and death, the pursuit of a means to unbalance that cycle, and ultimately the consequences of those actions. It’s a consistently entertaining action-adventure game with an eye-catching art style and engrossing combat, all which elevate its distinct setting into something special.

Playing as a fledgling of a commission of crows, you’re duty-bound to reclaiming the souls of those that are meant to pass onto the next life. Aided by doors that can transport you to lands near and far, you can hop between locales rapidly as you reap souls. The catch is that every crow needs to complete its task in order to halt the flow of their own life, with incomplete missions forcing you to experience that natural flow of time. When one such assignment goes poorly and your target’s soul is stolen, you’ll need to aid an old crow into opening a large, ominous door to reclaim your lost soul and, in turn, continue to live indefinitely.

Death’s Door starts strong with its introduction to the commissions, with its bleak black-and-white presentation fitting in with a strong noir theme. Colors stand out in these bureaucratic offices, with the warm glow of your weapons and the searing brightness of sparse neon signs creating a striking contrast. The rest of Death’s Door’s worlds are far more colorful but all distinct in their own ways–the dreary, muted colors of the game’s opening cemetery transform into a lush, green forest with a damp and dark temple, while the snowy white peaks of the northern mountain regions offer another opportunity for piercing bright colors from your attacks to shine through. The isometric angle of the game’s camera doesn’t limit your ability to soak in the artistic beauty of Death’s Door, which consistently had me stopping to take in the atmosphere of each new area.

Continue Reading at GameSpot

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