The inspiration behind Thymesia is loud and clear: Bloodborne. Everything about Thymesia, from the locales to the combat to the overall setting, is heavily influenced by Bloodborne. Thymesia doesn’t go out of its way to hide this fact, either. It leans fully into its mimicked settings while still finding ways to put unique twists on them, hoping to rouse the player’s nostalgia to the game’s benefit.
In a way, this works for Thymesia because it’s not pretending it’s original, meaning players in love with Bloodborne will find a lot to enjoy in this title. Thymesia treads familiar ground and delivers a good Soulslike experience. But unfortunately, the game doesn’t step outside Bloodborne’s shadow, leaving it plagued with the same issues that weigh down many Soulslike games.
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Thymesia starts with Corvus, the silent-but-deadly plague doctor protagonist, waking up in a crumbling village inhabited by sickly murderers. By the end of the first segment, Corvus is mercilessly smashed into the ground by a knight ten times his size, waking him up from a literal nightmare. Corvus then revisits various locales to cure his mysterious amnesia, defeating tough bosses along the way.
Each area Corvus visits is pretty linear, culminating in a climactic boss fight at the end. Thymesia forgoes a map system, meaning players are memorizing the landscape as they go. While this is great for immersion, this isn’t as great for navigation. Getting turned around and ending up back at the start is extremely easy. This is compounded by the lighting system, which provides little visual distinction between the different elements.
The familiarity extends to the enemies as well. There were many instances where enemies appeared seemingly out of thin air with no warning and started attacking; they were impossible to spot as we walked past them initially. Smart sound design could’ve prevented this situation with a noticeable audio cue, but those were absent. Music…