Please the Gods is a game I’ve been following a little bit for months and had to get immediately when it was released. It’s a game made by Finns, based on Finnish mythology of all things and it has beautiful art too so you know I was sold (even if the game hadn’t originated from the same gamelab I went through).
You play as a man called Sisu who goes on a journey to the land of the gods in search of the legendary Sampo to save his family from starvation. The gods send you on different quests to earn the pieces of Sampo from them and you need to do your best to survive.
Please the Gods has a really interesting combat and it’s something I’ve personally never seen before outside of DnD: both you and the enemy throw dice to determine whether your hits land. It is inspired by old-school dice combat so people who have played older RPGs and the like might be familiar but to me it was an interesting new mechanic. A lot of it is simply down to luck, but you can also get different skills that change the amount of dice you have or the numbers you get. I have terrible luck and I’ve never been the best with any kind of strategies so I admit to struggling a lot with the stronger enemies like bears.
There are little events outside of combat where the outcome is randomized as well, mainly hunting/gathering food, so if you have really bad luck with those it’s pretty much guaranteed you’re not going to survive to the end of the quest and once you die you have to start the quest over from the beginning, which can get frustrating. Luckily they happened to update the game this week with different difficulty modes and the option to restart a quest if you see things aren’t going well so you don’t need to just wait for Sisu’s inevitable demise.
The difficulty options are probably the only reason I managed to actually finish the game because I had been stuck on Nyyrikki’s bear fights for ages until I got to switch to easy mode. The game didn’t get too easy though, I still needed to think a lot about what’s the smartest way to go about battles and the final boss fight had both me and my fiance (who was just watching) stressed because it really could have ended either way. So what I’m trying to say is that they did a good job with the easy difficulty and I’m scared to even find out what the hard mode they also added is like.
All the art in the game is gorgeous and I especially like the designs of the gods. The first boss fight you run into is also extremely memorable because it has a pretty girl transforming into a creepy monster and I love the way it’s done. Just the right kind of messed up.
I’d say Please the Gods is definitely worth checking out if you like a challenge because it’s not an easy game (unless you get lucky) and also if you’re interested in Finnish mythology because it’s really not something you see often!