Following the death of your father, you have become the new ruler of Siralim. You’ll need to gather, find, and create your best creatures so that you can assist the citizens of your realm.
Siralim is a roguelike, monster catching/raising, dungeon crawler. You assume the role as the new ruler of Siralim – king or queen, it’s your choice – and need to do your duties to the country. These duties include slaying monsters, rescuing citizens, and convincing citizens to come to your castle. To do this, you’ll need the help of monsters. Thankfully, you’re a powerful mage and are able to control these monsters.
When you first start Siralim, you’ll have the ability to start as the mage of your choice. This begins the first instance of the game not really telling you much about things within it. You’ll have to simply find out for yourself what they do. Pretty much each mage is proficient in certain types of spells, and they’ll each have access to a particular set of perks (more explained on this later). The mage type you start as also determines the initial monster you’ll have available to you.
Siralim has, to put it lightly, a lot of monsters available to you. Remember how many Pokemon started with? Siralim has at least double that. Now granted, Pokemon had to deal with unique move pools for every monsters, and Siralim only has one unique ability per monster, so it’s a lot simpler in that sense. However, the fact Siralim has at least double the number of monster that Pokemon started with should still give you a sense as to just how many there are. With there being so many monsters available to you, there are a lot of different combinations that you can play with.
Combat in Siralim plays out in a turn-based fashion. You can have up to 6 creatures in your party at one time, though the more creatures you have the more you’ll face down on the opposing side. On the right of your screen you’ll see the next 5 or 6 upcoming turns so long as there’s enough things alive to fill the entire list. When it’s your turn, you’ll be able to choose between attacking, defending, provoking the enemy, casting a spell from your Spellbook, extracting a core from the enemy, or escaping to pass your turn. There’s also the ability to inspect your creatures, however that doesn’t actually pass your turn and I never really used that option.
However, combat goes way beyond just some options in a menu and the upcoming turn list on the side. The further you get into Siralim, the more complicated things are going to get. As I said, each creature has a unique ability, and these abilities will determine the order in which you kill things in battle. For instance, one particular creature has an ability that when they attack, they have a 50% chance to revive a dead party member. Now of course, abilities that you tend to find rather annoying often end up being quite useful when on your side. There’s quite a bit of mix and matching that you can do though, so don’t be afraid to experiment! You just might find a combination you fall in love with – I know I did.
There’s also artifacts that can greatly help in influencing how battles play out. Artifacts can be found from completing duties, in treasure chests, can be made at the Blacksmith (once unlocked), or you can gather pieces to make a single piece within particular realms. Depending on the level of the artifact, they can have a multitude of different stats on them, from increases to your base stats to unique abilities. As you kill enemies with these artifacts equipped, they’ll level up, allowing you to add more abilities to them through the use of the Enchantress. Artifacts can really help you out during battle, so it’s definitely to your benefit to try and keep up to date on them!
I both love and hate the Enchantress. On one hand, she provides valuable help for boosting up your artifacts to become even better. On the other hand, you can’t tell what abilities do before you add them to a piece of equipment (or you’ve seen them on a monster you’ve made or extracted from before), which makes it difficult to determine what you want for your setup. Thankfully, you can remove the last ability added to a piece, but this will still leave you down the materials and resources used to add it on.
Resources are a fickle thing. There are some ways you can boost what you got, including a particular creature that can add to your resources should it be alive at the end of turn, but you may still find resources to be a bit tight. Since enemies seem to scale to the average level of your party, levelling up isn’t always in your best interest, so you often want to find all the resources you can to make progress in that way instead. Seeing as everything in the game relies on these resources (with very few exceptions), you definitely want to do what you can to try and get your hands on them.
Within the world of Siralim, there are a multitude of realms available for you to go to. While at first you’ll only have the realm that is related to the mage type you started with, you’ll be able to perform rituals to unlock more and more realms. Each realm has a unique flavour to it, with some even going as far as to effect combat! They all have their good and bad sides to them, so I’d suggest trying to get them all unlocked as soon as you can.
Within the castle itself there are a vast multitude of things available for you to unlock. This includes the previously mentioned Blacksmith and Enchantress, but there’s also the ability to create “Nether” creatures, create gems (which are needed for the Nether creatures), perform powerful rituals, create more creatures, and participate within a colosseum. There’s also a stable within the castle that will hold all of the extra creatures that you have that won’t fit in your party. You can also find little side quests to do in the castle, though completion of these tends to depend on the level of your mage.
Speaking of side quests in the castle, there’s one in particular that is located within the library. To complete it, you’ll need to get your mage to level 50. Once you do so, you’ll be awarded with the ability to use and find a Wolpertinger Invader. Unfortunately, as of the writing of this review, this particular creature is a bit glitchy. In fact, if you’re playing on the PS4 or Vita version (this review is based off of the PS4 version), I would actually suggest you avoid completing this quest until it is patched. Why? Well, should you try and view the enemy in your stable, it will completely crash the game with a big, complex looking error message. Luckily, the developer is currently looking into it (and other bugs currently present) and will be patching the game soon. It’s a shame too, because the Wolpertinger Invader looks like a fun creature to play with.
As for your mage itself, it also has a level and will also gain experience as you complete battles and duties. As it levels up (and as you complete duties), you will gain Royalty Points. These points can be used for a wide variety of perks which can help you out in both battle and in finding things in the field. As a Nature Mage, I had specific Nature Mage perks that I could access along with the Character and Creature perks. Each mage has their own list of unique perks, with the list helping compliment the type of mage you are. There will be a lot to take in at first as you’re looking through the list, however you’ll quickly get the hang of it and will figure out what you need. Hint: I suggest investing in things that increase the amount of resources and quality of treasures you earn!
The graphics of Siralim are definitely not what one expects on a PS4, as they do call back to the olden days of pixel graphics, however they are still quite good. While there are some creatures that look like simply a pallette swap, there are a lot of unique looking creatures to. You also have the ability to choose how zoomed in you are on the field, though Vita players take note – your zoom levels are different from those who are playing on PS4. If you think the game looks too small, go for the 4x zoom – this zoom level is equivalent to PS4’s 2x zoom. As for the music, it is fairly enjoyable, and the sound effects are also quite well done.
Siralim is a fun and addicting game that will likely suck you in and not let you go. While at first, when I had a less interesting party, I was finding the combat to just be a bit dull, it did get a lot better as I got further and unlocked more and more interesting creatures. Unfortunately, the console versions of Siralim are currently facing a number of issues, such as the mentioned Wolpertinger Invader glitch, a trophy that is glitched from unlocking (enchant an artifact with a legendary crafting material – I did so and the trophy never unlocked for me), and some people were also experiencing issues with their games not saving correctly. Fortunately, the developer is looking into these issues and is planning to fix them soon.
So, while I do highly recommend the game, I do suggest waiting for the issues to be fixed. With that said, I’m actually going to give this game a double rating – one rating for the game as it is, with the glitches. The other rating will be for the game without the glitches present, especially since it does sound like they should be getting fixed soon. Through all of this though, I do highly recommend the game, I just suggest waiting for the glitches to be fixed so you don’t have to worry about that darn Wolpertinger Invader crashing your game from the stable!
Siralim Review Score (With Glitches)
Siralim Review Score (Without Glitches)
I would like to thank the developer for providing me with a copy of the game for review purposes.