Parents' Guide to

Vambrace: Cold Soul

By Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Tough side-scrolling tale has some fantasy violence.

Game Nintendo Switch , Windows 2019
Vambrace: Cold Soul Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
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There's a lot to like about this role-playing game -- assuming you're not one to shy away from a high level of difficulty. Vambrace: Cold Soul has a rich narrative filled with interesting characters, along with plenty of world lore and backstories waiting to be discovered. Its intricate, hand drawn graphics -- complimented by a dark and dynamic score -- are wonderfully moody, providing a great sense of atmosphere throughout the adventure. And its systems are rules are sophisticated, demanding planning and strategy in order to achieve success. Putting the right character (preferably one with high awareness to identify and avoid traps and strong short range attacks) at the front of your party can make all the difference, as can posting someone with a high overwatch stat to stand guard during camping sessions. Plus, figuring out how to effectively deal with the party's constantly rising terror meter is crucial, as is keeping track of your location so you can efficiently traverse twisty, labyrinthine maps.

Indeed, if you don't take the time to learn how to play properly by reading all of the pop-up tutorials that appear early on -- or are prone to growing frustrated by frequent party member deaths or loss of up to an hour's worth of progress -- it may not be the right kind of game for you. Victories are earned through a mix of practice and tactical thinking. Failure must be viewed as a learning experience that gives you valuable lessons and insight that can be applied to your next try. It's punishing at first, but as you continue to play, your heroine will grow stronger, your instincts will improve, and you'll eventually begin finishing some missions without a single death. This intense difficulty won't be for everyone, but those who appreciate a compelling plot and lush hand drawn graphics coupled with a good challenge are bound to get plenty out of Vambrace: Cold Soul.

Game Details

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