Lies of P Review

I’ve always been a fan of the Souls games, or even just the souls-like formula. I’ve never been all that good at it, but just something about the slow exploration, the devilishly difficult enemies, and the sheer excitement and relief of finally downing an enemy that has put you through the floor ten times over just pulls me in every single time. Over the years since From Software introduced Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls, and indeed an entirely new genre all of its own to the world, there have been plenty of developers who have tried to emulate the success, but very few ever get it right. For every enjoyable souls-like adventure such as Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice or Remnant: From the Ashes, we have a bunch of forgettable efforts that we wish never saw the light of day – Hellpoint, I’m looking at you!

This year’s widely promoted Souls-like effort is Lies of P and having spent many hours this week traversing the city of Krat, I have to say I’ve never been so impressed with a game that I had such a huge hype for. Kudos to you Neowiz Games and Round8 Studio, as this is a world players will want more of.

To kick things off, players are put into the fancy wears of Geppetto’s greatest creation, Pinocchio, a half-human, half-puppet, and the last hope to defend the rather gothic and darkened mechanical city of Krat from the army of rogue puppets that have laid claim to its streets and murdered its people. As this dark and twisted retelling of a classic adventure begins, Pinocchio sits, lifeless, in an old abandoned and out-of-service steam train but only until the Ergo or life essence of a young and mysterious woman known as Sophia calls out and awakens him, prompting the first task of pushing forward to the last remaining safe haven in Krat, the once bustling Hotel Krat.

From the very first moments you begin walking the city streets, one thing is very clear – Lies of P looks and feels incredible. The atmosphere, the visuals, the sounds, everything instantly reminded me of Bloodborne, and for all of the right reasons. From the creases on Pinocchio’s ruffled clothing to the grime and dirt that has been left to accumulate alongside the corpses that cover the streets and cobblestone paving, to the fantastic soundtrack that ramps up in moments of tense combat and softens down in a moment of escape, there is nothing I would have wanted any different in the presentation of this dark and gothic experience.

Having fantastic visuals won’t do a Souls-like many favours though if it can’t match the epic combat such games are revered for. Lies of P however succeeds in combat too, with the issues raised in the early demo ironed out and combat now feeling fair and fluid as you take on the deliberately wooden attacks from the rogue animatronics savaging the city of Krat. Combat isn’t forgiving though and this is one of those titles in which you’ll need to learn the attack patterns of your enemies if you want to maintain your balance of Ergo (The credit equivalent of Souls) earned from defeating them, and then remain unscathed long enough to reach the next Stargazer (these are Bonfires in every other ‘Souls’) to be able to teleport back Hotel Krat and spend them on levelling.

A big change seen in combat within Lies of P comes from the weapon dismantling, with players able to take blades and handles apart and create an all-new weapon. Whilst the early game may not see this be something you dabble with too much, later in the game it becomes essential as you find the best combination to use alongside your character build that you’ve been leveling.

On top of weapon dismantling, Legion Arms also play a big role with Pinocchio having an interchangeable mechanical arm that is charged with consumables – (or at least that was the quickest way I found to charge them) and is capable of delivering a special attack to enemies, something which is especially useful in boss fights when you need that extra little kick of damage, with various different options bringing their own unique abilities, stats and attacks.

The one and only negative in Lies of P for me comes down to the humanity system, or rather lack of it. Throughout the game, players are given opportunities through main and side-quests to either lie or tell the truth, and doing either will affect your humanity. Your total humanity then translates into which ending of the game you get with multiple endings available, however, beyond the ending, there is no obvious point to humanity whatsoever, lying will see you told that your springs are reacting but throughout my time with the game I saw no consequences of this, begging the question what is the point of it whatsoever.

Beyond this, however, I can’t have anything but praise for this incredible adventure. From the combat, which is both fluid and enjoyable, to the bosses that are unique and look incredible, to the detail and the atmosphere, everything is purely enjoyable right from the very first moment. Sure, the story isn’t the best showcase of a fantastically woven tale, but it pulls you along offering enough to keep things interesting whilst the gameplay takes the focus and keeps the enjoyment going. Lies of P may not be capable of bringing a series as strong as Dark Souls but I fully expect to see a sequel and plenty of praise for this puppet-filled adventure, as I for one cannot put it down.


Overall, there is plenty to explore within the confines of its vast yet linear areas and it rarely has a dull moment with plenty of enemy variety, incredible boss fights, and some truly spectacular visuals. If you’re a fan of From Software, then I expect you to now be a fan of Lies of P as it has all the right notes and feels like From Software themselves have been in the backend having a tinker on a fresh I.P and for that, we can only praise the solid work put in from Neowiz Games and Round8 Studio.

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This game was reviewed based on Xbox S|X review code, using an Xbox S|X console. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by publisher.

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  • Incredible atmosphere
  • Stunning visuals
  • The best souls-like born outside of From Software
  • Enemy variety
  • Enjoyable from the first moments
  • Humanity system feels a bit pointless beyond game endings
Written by
After many years of dabbling and failing in Dark Souls and many other equally brutal gaming adventures, I can now be found in a state of relaxation, merely hunting for a little extra gamerscore or frightening myself with the latest Resident Evil - Sometimes I write about it too!

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