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Morbid The Lords of Ire 1

Morbid: The Lords of Ire won’t light the Soulslike genre afire

Home » Features » Morbid: The Lords of Ire won’t light the Soulslike genre afire

With the Shadow of the Erdtree expansion launching for the phenomenal Elden Ring in less than two weeks, it’s a bad time to be releasing a Soulslike. After all, what can possibly go up against Elden Ring – not only the best Soulslike available right now, but also one of the best games ever made? Admittedly, Morbid: The Lords of Ire, the latest entry in the genre, did actually release last month. Also, it’s less than half the price of your normal release. But still, if you’re a Soulslike fan, you might want to think twice before buying it.

You see, Morbid: The Lords of Ire just isn’t particularly good. Taking place after the events of Morbid: The Seven Acolytes, the action is shifted from 2D with an isometric viewpoint to fully 3D, robbing the series of the one thing that made it a bit different in the first place. And so, you find yourself moving though numerous environments, trying to hunt down the titular Lords of Ire much like you would in any number of typical Soulslikes.

The problem is, the environments themselves aren’t all that interesting. There’s the odd flourish here and there that catches your eye, but for the most part the scenery is drab and the map design just dull. Even unlocking helpful shortcuts here doesn’t feel as exciting and rewarding as it should do. Add lacklustre combat on top, and you have a game that truly fails to incite the desire to have one more try when you inevitably meet your demise.

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Image: Still Running/Merge Games

Rather than have you create your own character, Morbid: The Lords of Ire put you in the shoes of Striver, a stoic heroine with a grave task on her hands. As such, there’s no stat distribution to be done, and little opportunity to make a build truly of your own. But there are multiple weapons to be found, each with their own moveset as well as strengths and weakness. And you can tweak your weapons with runes, too, should you find them.

Beyond that, the main feeling of growth is derived from gaining skill points via levelling up, which then allow you to unlock more slots in which stat-boosting cards can be placed. You do get more powerful over time, then, but not in a way that feels entirely engaging or rewarding. It’s lacking that hook that most traditional Soulslikes have.

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Image: Still Running/Merge Games

There are other issues, too, like haphazard enemy placement that sometimes might make you want to tear your hair out. It also really wants you to perform perfect blocks or parries rather than dodging or rolling, even though the latter two have buttons dedicated to them. Throw in some terrible framerate issues on PS5, and you have a game that truly is a bit of a disappointment.

If you’re after a Soulslike to play, then, even if only to tide you over until Shadow of the Erdtree lands, we can’t recommend Morbid: The Lords of Ire. It’s not quite the worst Soulslike we’ve ever played, but there’s little about it that we can ruminate over positively in our minds. Still, there’s potential here for a decent game here at least. Perhaps we’ll revisit it after a patch or two has landed.

Morbid: The Lords of Ire is available on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Switch and PC.

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