April 16, 2024
REVIEW: DOLMEN

REVIEW: DOLMEN

In a world where a powerful Marvel villain is called Knull ( which in itself is deliberate… ) and where the car Honda Jazz would have been called Honda Fi ** a if the Swedish Honda office had not taken the opportunity to point out exactly what they had intended to name the car. So it was not entirely unlikely that a game would eventually get a fun name (in Swedish); namely the Dolmen (for those of you who probably do not already know the meaning in English, the answer is here )

Here we fight nasty creatures who are out to tear you to pieces in a game that mixes the sci-fi and horror genre. Avoid having your timeline erased and try to save the world before it’s too late. To help you, you have various distance and melee weapons in the form of swords and axes. Upgrade your warrior during the journey, because it is important to be maximally strong to cope with the lifeline in this dark world.

Photo: © 2022 - Massive Work Studio - Dolmen - Holding his Sword.
Photo: © 2022 – Massive Work Studio

The dolmen is described as a cross between Dark Souls and Dead Space and I can really sign that description. There are few games that have kicked my ass as hard as Dark Souls and in second place actually comes Dolmen . This is a really difficult game! It is literally crowded with enemies and they are attacking from all sides. Your weapons are initially very weak and extremely slow, while the enemy is strong and durable. This leads to proper frustration at first. So, be prepared to die, often…

The problem for me when a game is this difficult right from the start is that it becomes difficult to get into the flow and the experience feels more like a job than a game challenge. Once you have put in the time and worn out the technology, the Dolmen opens up and becomes more fun. The stronger your avatar becomes and the better weapon you find, the more you get out of the game (like the Fire Ring ).

Photo: © 2022 - Massive Work Studio - Dolmen - Holding his own.
Photo: © 2022 – Massive Work Studio

The environments are well made and nice, but the animations and creatures you meet feel a bit outdated and a bit “simple”. The textures seem quite low resolution and they do not move so nicely. Then I was surprised when the intermediate sequences are not updated with the avatar design you have chosen. This is more or less standard in games nowadays that all details follow, but not in the Dolmen (in the name of honesty, lavish Guardians of the Galaxy miss this little detail also in some intermediate sequences). What weighs up is the sound design, which really makes use of the surround speakers. It crawls and rattles everywhere when the enemy sneaks up on you. Really scary and well done.

Photo: © 2022 - Massive Work Studio - Dolmen - Holding his Sword again.
Photo: © 2022 – Massive Work Studio

Another thing that bothered me is that somewhere someone has apparently made a decision to “jump” is a feature that should be removed in games. In the Dolmen you can not jump and there are many situations that would have been sooo much easier if you could just take a small, small shot.

In summary, Dolmen is really not a game for everyone, this is developed to give you white knuckles and chewed lips. You simply have to like being tormented for a couple of hours before it starts to drop a bit. Once you are there, you will be richly rewarded as the genre should be, but the road there is crooked and hard.

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