Gaming XBox

Lies of P is a Compelling New Soulslike Adventure

Lies of P is a fantastic interpretation of “The Adventures of Pinocchio,” dropping our beloved puppet within the nightmarish city of Krat, a fallen utopia built on the backs of mechanical puppets who have gone mad and slain its citizens. Their creator, Geppetto, has gone missing and “P” is brought to life to track him down to try and save the city. In the classic fairy tale, Pinocchio embarks on many adventures of self-discovery and encounters a wide range of characters – many of them bad actors who take advantage of his ignorance—which leads him on a transformative journey where he learns what it means to be human, the power of forgiveness, and of course, repercussions for lying.

It doesn’t take much to see that the string that connects Lies of P to the classic tale of Pinocchio is a delicate one, but that’s precisely the allure the game brings to the table here. This isn’t a story you’ve heard before and it plays with the familiar in ways we really haven’t seen with the Pinocchio fable. The lurid world of Lies of P is a compelling one, filled with evil puppets, dim alleyways, treacherous rooftops, and bodies scattered about; victims of a corrupting Petrification Disease or at the hands of puppets turning on their former masters.

All of this is captured in a cityscape inspired by the Belle Époque era of France—a time of great scientific and artistic achievement – in both its majestic architecture and how technology works (e.g., lots of clocks and steam). The game’s world plays with ideas familiar to you, both from the real world and its fabled source material, as you continue to explore its haunting environments.
As you step into the world of Lies of P, you’ll no doubt start making these connections yourself, with some of the more iconic characters tied to its source material. There’s P (Pinocchio) and your narrative companion named Gemini standing in for the cricket (Gemini, Jiminy – get it?). The puppet inventor Geppetto and the blue-haired Sophia (the fairy) are both instrumental in helping level up your character – and perhaps these characters will play a role in having P become more human later in the game.

There are other callbacks as well that we’ve encountered, like the Parade Watchman, one of the first bosses in the game, who seems to be inspired by the puppet master, Mangiafuoco. And you can “turn into a donkey” by equipping The Mad Donkey mask, obtained by defeating a wild citizen who functions as the game’s third boss. And from the screenshots, it appears The Black Rabbits, undertakers for Death from the original story, will make an appearance at some point in the game as well. There will be more introduced throughout to be sure, but these were some of the more recognizable characters I’ve encountered in the early parts of the game.

The other inspiration that Lies of P draws upon is the Soulslike genre. Many of the genre’s staples are at play here, like a high degree of difficulty, repeated death yielding knowledge, limited save points, and combat mechanics that reward parries and attacks of opportunity – all of which feed into the challenging gameplay found in Lies of P.

The challenge, like many Soulslikes, will be in your patience with any enemy confrontation throughout the game, forcing you to study, anticipate, and then exploit the patterns you’re able to discern. It can be a very difficult game at times and perseverance will be tested. But the trickle of seeing what is hiding just beyond the dreary fog that blankets the world of Lies of P is a compelling one that will push you forward.

And at the center of both the adaptation of Pinocchio and Soulslikes will be the “lying” element. The game’s lore leads you to believe that puppets are incapable of lying, but something is special about P—he can. There will be times when you will be confronted with choices where you can give solace to others by lying — or you can tell the truth. How this plays out through the rest of the adventure remains to be seen, but it does add another, very Souls-y layer of mystery that Lies of P has promised here.

Lies of P launches on September 15 in early access for those who purchased the Digital Deluxe Edition. Game Pass members can start playing the Standard Edition on September 19 for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and Windows. For the official launch schedule, please refer to the image below.

Source: Xbox News

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