Lies of P is just around the corner, but we got to try it out one last time at Gamescom 2023, and we even talked to the developer.
During this long summer of video games, Lies of P has dominated, partly because there were no competitors worthy of the title, partly because everyone was finally able to taste the mesmerizing souls signed by the Korean team. neovisa. Looking back and after a few hours of playing, we know that Lies of P is a solid product that can provide all sorts of fun.
The original premise, however, was much more smoky and a little whimsical: it was supposed to be a pure Bloodborne-style soul that reimagines the Pinocchio tale in dark and corrupted tones. On September 19, the game will debut on PC and consoles, but before the release during Gamescom 2023 we were able to try out some of the unreleased parts of Lies of P Taken straight from the final game, and chat with Ji-won Choi, Director-Producer.
lady in white
When we arrived at the meeting, we were immediately asked if we would like to try the intermediate stage of the game or go straight to the boss fight,”difficult“. With about a quarter of an hour at our disposal, we chose to play it safe and not die countless times in vain. So we went on a tour of the entertainment district, where before the disaster that hit the city of Krat, operettas, music and theater were at the center of the stage, compared with what has already been expressed in our test, the game it hasn’t really changedindeed, the structure is always the same. The devs tell us that they’ve made very few changes given the great reception of the June demo, other than adding a slew of new weapons and never-before-seen items to the inventory.
After clearing the road of automated security, we passed through a house now inhabited only by maid robots. Right after that, we met a very dangerous type of enemy – beautiful female automatons dressed as jesters, and with a “funny” surprise: they see you, point at you and blow themselves up with one last, creepy laugh. From that point on, we faced another group of enemies, this time all with ranged weapons, with rifles and throwing explosive bombs.
We had to strategize thanks to raised position the balcony from which we came, a place that provided some respite, but above all to study the ensuing battle. This is one aspect that initially struck us with Lies of P, because while we didn’t achieve (as seen in the June demo) the elegant verticality and complex labeling system cards Bloodborne has succeeded in its simplicity in offering an engaging level design consisting of alternating large spaces, narrow passages, and strategic points such as shortcuts and elevated points. In this regard, Ji-won Choi tells us, “Our priority has always been to create a dense map full of points of interest rather than focusing on a large but dispersed area. Even though Lies of P is an action game, you can’t just fill the map with enemies, it’s not the amount of combat that makes the experience exciting. So we thought about routes that followed a certain rhythm, timing high danger and other safer ones, littering the streets of Krat with objects, trying to provide an incentive for exploration.”
Since this point in our test, we have come across two distinct congenital elements: secondary mission entrusted to us by a lady behind an open window curtain, with a light on to signal her presence, and a very stimulating mid-level boss fight. In fact, for the first time we encountered human enemy, a lady dressed in white and especially skilled in rapier combat… and then yes, we are dead and our trials here are over. However, this meeting reminded us a lot of all the fights with the Blood Hunters. Whether they were NPCs at the end of the mission, such as Cainhurst’s Crow or Lady Maria, encounters with other human enemies are infinitely more satisfying, in the author’s opinion, than killing a giant boss. And this, too, in Lies of P is no exception. See you again, Lady in White.
Although Bloodborne was only mentioned once during our interview, the FromSoftware creature was clearly the elephant in the room during the conversation with Ji-won Choi, and the Korean developer seemed to be well aware that yardstick in the case of “Lie P” this comparison inevitably passes. However, the producer sought to convey the point of view of the entire development team on his creation.
The discussion shaped itself by talking about level design, and then moved on to using the game environment as a tool for indirect storytelling. The city of Krath, like Yharnam, is littered with small details that give the story extra context. “We cared a lot about the gaming environment because we didn’t want to leave anything to chance. However, at the same time, we wanted our game it wasn’t too weird, but more understandable than the traditional soullike. There are moments of speculation and doubt, but the beginning of the game should have been clear to us: we inserted cutscenes or NPC intervention where necessary without worrying too much about the label or what the genre envisions.” .Disarming honesty, which made us empathize with the manufacturer in many ways. Indeed, in the eyes of the developer one could read satisfaction for his own creation and at the same time the desire to finish it in the presence of as many players as possible. This is possible; we think it’s reasonable that the team opted for a softer, more linear approach to the story so as not to make it unnecessarily complex and indigestible. The same applies to the difficulty curve, which we personally found poorly calculated in the June demo. -won Choi admits that they didn’t collect feedback in that sense, but the team’s goal was to slowly introduce players to the gaming world without being too liberal.
Compared with plot then we confessed that, in some respects, Lie P almost reminded us more of a sci-fi story than fantasy. The fact that the dolls follow principles similar to the laws of robotics makes us think on a decidedly sci-fi level. “An important point that we wanted to touch on in the game is connected precisely with solutionsto free will. For this reason, Lodge P puppets are more independent and perhaps a little less subservient than classical robots, with P apparently becoming an exception. At that time it perfectly coincided with our personal vision of the tale of Pinocchio. It’s true, we started with Collodi’s story and reimagined some of his main characters, but we also added a lot of things that weren’t in the original story.”
Among the team’s various personal quirks, there is clearly an artistic one, and by now everyone knows how resemblance between P and actor Timothée Chalamet borders on the most obvious respect. We couldn’t help but get the producer’s comment. “We read the comments on the Internet, we know about this strong similarity, but it is, of course, completely unintentional. We immediately thought of P with gentle, non-threatening features… but throughout history, he won “Don’t always look like an actor.” We have no idea what that last sentence means, but we can’t wait to find out its meaning by playing Lie P.
Lies of P has officially ended and will be available for purchase on September 19th. This latest trip with the Neovisa doll gave us the opportunity to not only test the game once again, which is confirmed to be reliable and well-packaged, but also to speak directly with the developers. The team is well aware of their game: they know they have a good product in their hands, and they also know it’s too dangerous to take risks with the kind of virtuosity that FromSoftware has taught us over the years. Less mysterious than Bloodborne, but no less difficult, Lies of P will please many and will be able to surprise even the most skeptical.
- Not huge but very well done
- Always an exciting atmosphere and artistic direction.
- Really many items in inventory
- The balance is clear only after beating the game
- Some animations have been kept a bit simple.