Nine Parchments is a solid twin-stick, isometric, Action RPG with some great multiplayer fun. As a single player title, it does begin to feel a bit repetitive but this is offset by the exceptionally fun multiplayer. If you own a Switch or PC, or other console and are looking for something to scratch that twin-stick shooter itch but with a magical twist, Nine Parchments is definitely worth checking out.
Great couch co-op and the graphics are super pretty. Some reviews mention friendly fire being annoying, but you very quickly learn which spells might bounce off the enemies and also how to position yourself so you don’t hit each other, it just makes the game more challenging and interesting.
Nine Parchments features fun and challenging combats, as well as plenty of options and an exquisite visual environment. Where it performs less well is on its level design, which feels rather bland, and on its plot and narrative, making this component a disappointment but one which still feels good to play and which can bring some hours of fun.
Nine Parchments has its problems, but for the most part, it is still an entertaining dungeon crawler. If you plan on playing solo, your playtime might be a little more frustrating, but if you have some local friends, a multiplayer romp through this game is sure to be a good time. Online, as of this writing, is a wild card. If it works well, Nine Parchments has the potential to be one of the better online experiences on the Switch. If it's rough? Well, a lot of the appeal for Nine Parchments will wash away. We will update with a final review after more playtime before we reach a verdict.
With a stronger connection to the world and a more rewarding progression system, Nine Parchments could have been more than a fleeting arcade fancy. If you can find it on sale (which it has hosted many times since launch) and can wrangle up three other people, it's a decent party game that will fill a single afternoon.
Nine Parchments can be enjoyable in small doses with others. Playing alone can feel depressing as the grind of pressing on feels strongly palpable. There really isn't anything wrong with the mechanics since it controls nicely and feedback is satisfying. The art direction is top-notch and fantasy atmosphere has a much more colourful Magic the Gathering vibe going on. It is the sheer unimaginative level design and pedestrian scenarios that will bore most people. There is very little variation from the first stages to the end game stages and there is desperately a need for something to mix up the action.
Nine Parchments is a gorgeous looking game. It's charming and addictive. I've been playing it solo and it's an absolute blast, you don't really need to play it with other to enjoy the game. I recommend it.
A fine enough game, but pick it up on sale. It's too limited in scope to be worth the full $20, but if you have some friends to play local co-op with, you'll get $10 of fun out of it. It's also very difficult to play in handheld mode, so if you're the kind of person, like me, that mostly uses the Switch as a portable, this game won't be very good for you.
So close to being so damn good!
Overall, I'm pretty happy with my purchase of this game. For $20, your'e getting a gorgeous magic-filled dungeon crawler that you can take on the go. The combat can be punishing at first, but once you learn how to evade the enemies various attacks you can really start to fly through the levels with no trouble. I have spent time both playing alone and online with others, and online is definitely the way to go if you can.
There are a couple points of frustration in Nine Parchments, and they're seriously ruining what would otherwise be an amazing experience. The communication while playing online limits you to a couple of odd phrases that fall short of conveying anything close to what you want to relay to your online teammates. Did your party almost wipe during a boss fight but a single player managed to survive long enough to revive the entire team? Too bad your only way of saying "thank you" on your chosen character is limited to "_____ is polite." Customization for quick communication would go a long way to helping coordinate or express strategies in and outside of battles.
Secondly, and the single most frustrating part about this game, is the progression system of levels in the game. Say you've been adventuring alone and offline for a few hours, but then a friend (or little brother who lives far away in my case) texts to play with you. If you jump into a new run online with him, those hours you just put in by yourself are GONE. Your character's level and skill tree remains, but you have to start over from the academy again. I don't understand why there isn't an option to start from later levels if you've already completed them with that specific character. It honestly feels like you're being punished for switching modes like this. The only semi work-around I've found for this is to host an online match, wait for someone to join, then use that as my only point of progression. People can drop in and out, friends can join, but you can still continue to play alone. Just don't leave the house though, or you'll have to switch to offline mode and you'll lose your spot again.
Honestly, I would easily give this game a 9 and recommend it to more of my friends if they fixed the above, but as it stands, I don't want them to be stuck with the same frustrations.
Online is non existent. The entire point of this game is too have a functioning online multiplayer. The only way to get this game to be playable at all is through local multiplayer. Otherwise don't bother playing the game solo and better yet don't bother buying this game in the first place.
This game doesn't seem to know what it is. It's kind of a roguelike, kind of an action RPG, and kind of a couch co-op pick-up-and-play game. Unfortunately, it only does each of these halfassed. The game is too long for a roguelike, too shallow and grindy for a good action rpg, and too difficult and frantic to just pick up and play with people of various skill levels.
What being said, I had fun on my first single player playthrough. However, once I finished that I realized the replayability options ****. I could either play the main campaign that I had just beaten again, either with the same character or a different one, or do the "astral arena". The astral arena said I should be at least level 40, while my character was level 32 after beating the game. I would either have to replay half the campaign with the same character to get to 40, or just restart the game at level 1 with a new character. Neither of those sound fun.
There are also some other minor issues - it's hard to see treasure chests against the background, the movement is slow and boring except for blink, which recharges way too slowly, there's usually about 20 seconds of just walking with nothing to do between encounters, there are dangerous elements like cliffs and flames that are difficult to distinguish against the background, too many enemies are built solely for co-op play and are boring and tedious to beat single player, and nothing you unlock really seems to change the game in any meaningful way.
This game has some good ideas, but it tries to be too many things at the same time, and never really does any of them well.