In March last year, developer BenStar released Revita on Steam’s early access program to gather feedback from fans as the team worked hard on a game close to their hearts. The care BenStar put into the final product lives on in this endearing indie game. Revita bills itself as a twin-stick rogue-lite platformer with mechanics inspired by the seminal 2011 Binding of Isaac. Now at its full 1.0 launch, Revita turns out to be a charming game with crisp controls, addictive gameplay loop and excellent soundtrack. The game may contain a bit of a learning curve, but it should appeal to many fans of rogue-like games.
Revita opens with the player controlling a child with amnesia who has woken up in a mysterious subway station. the The story is presented in a seen, not told manner that forces players to understand bits and pieces of the world to figure out what happened to the boy. The main objective of the player is to reach the top of the final clock tower by progressing through a series of smaller towers, each containing multiple floors and a boss at the top with a themed twist. Along the way, the player will encounter various NPCs that will aid them in their journey, each unlocking new mechanics and game progression systems.
Beautiful sprites and colorful battle arenas litter Revita’s visual experience. The game manages to never look very dull in its backgrounds despite reusing a lot of geometry in its multiple towers. Enemy designs are varied and unique, and it won’t take too long for players to remember an enemy’s moveset just by glancing at the screen. Fill the world with Revita is an excellent soundtrack that captures the melancholy vibe of the central area of Memoria Station while adding memorable jingles to the fast-paced floors where the battles take place. There is also a neat element of customization in the game; [layers can outfit the main character with hats and decorate the walls of Memoria Station thanks to unlockable blueprints.
The fight is one of Revitathe greatest strengths of, feeling very similar to platformers like Cuphead. Revitait is the gameplay relies on players becoming masters of running, jumping, and shooting through bullet-hell style combat scenarios that gradually become more hectic. Although initially hard to get used to, using the left bumper and left trigger to jump and dash became intuitive as the action grew more intense in later levels. Revita is a challenging game at first and has a bit of a learning curve, but the payoff is well worth it when players find themselves navigating through levels with grace, masterfully dodging an onslaught of bullets and lasers.
Revita sets apart from its platforming contemporaries with its unique use of player health as currency. Relics, vans and various other objects in Revita requiring the player to sacrifice some health in exchange for goods and services. This risk-reward health management system challenges players to think about their health and skill level in a new way. A better player, confident in their abilities, may have the luxury of purchasing an expensive Tier 2 rarity relic for multiple hearts from one of the game’s various relic fountains. However, less skilled players who wager little and sacrifice half or whole hearts at chests can still be rewarded with valuable relics that can drastically change the way the game is played.
Players can acquire more health by defeating enemies and collecting their souls, refilling the Soul Meter. Players can then use the Souls Meter to restore cores. A combo system is also unlocked at the start that increases the number of souls players collect based on how quickly they can defeat a room of enemies. Revita emphasizes the importance of mastering its systems at all times and generously rewards players as they improve in the game; however, it has multiple progression paths as players fail and retry in their quest for mastery.
Particularly, Revita is a rogue-lite, which means the game will constantly throw new things at the player each time it runs. While skillful play will take players far into Revita, it’s the constant cycle of failure and trial where progression actually happens. Every death becomes an opportunity to find something new, whether it’s a secret room containing a new NPC or a coveted celestial weapon that wipes enemies off the map, there’s always something to discover . Anything uncovered will directly help the player or even curse them with debuffs if they are unlucky. Revita features a myriad of highly varied relics, and players can unlock even more relics with soul coins in the central area of the game. Many relics will boost the player’s stats, and some even have the ability to completely alter the player’s approach in combat scenarios. A relic that may not have been perceived as valuable could become the key to another release if the synergy is right. Only through repeated trials will players experience the full game has to offer.
Besides, Revita features a procedural generation system that creates a unique race each time the player fails. No two races are ever really the same. Each spawn spawns new floors containing new enemy locations, new relics, new secret rooms, and new level layouts. Although the levels never seemed to vary much in their structure, players will quickly find that the game changes just enough with each floor to always feel fresh. Entering a new room, assessing the situation and acting on an elaborate plan in seconds is a constant commitment. The wide variety of discoverable objects, buildings, NPCs, and procedurally generated nature of Revita makes the whole experience addictive.
Revita is a great addition to the rogue-like genre’s ever-expanding library of games that fans should have on their radar. It doesn’t defy current genre conventions much, but what it does, it does well. Revita introduces an interesting health management system that constantly challenges players to think about the consequences of their actions and features satisfying combat, responsive platforming, and a wonderful soundtrack. It all comes together to create an addictive package that will keep players returning to the game’s charming towers and dark subway stations for many hours.
Revita is now available for PC and Switch. Game Rant received a PC code for this review.
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