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Stellar Blade: Is it a Souls-Like?

Stellar Blade is a pretty challenging game to the point that many may believe it to be a souls-like. But does it actually fit into that sub-genre?

If you’ve tried the Stellar Blade demo recently, you may have been caught off guard by how difficult it is. Once you get to grips with the game’s combat, it does get easier. However, it can be a little surprising how challenging it can get. Naturally, this may lead many to believe that it is a souls-like, the go-to buzzword for anything remotely difficult. Below, we explain whether Stellar Blade actually fits into that category or if it’s just hard.

Is Stellar Blade a Souls-Like?

No, Stellar Blade isn’t technically a souls-like, but it’s designed to be a challenging experience. The game lets you switch difficulties on the go and even features a Story Mode difficulty that has Action Assist, which makes combat easier. However, players won’t be able to just hack and slash their way through. You’ll need to observe your enemies’ moves, get to know their attack patterns, and find the equipment that best suits your playstyle.

This was expanded upon by director Kim Hyung Taw and technical director Lee Dong Gi in an interview for the PlayStation Blog. In the interview, Kim explained that Stellar Blade has been designed “so everyone can enjoy the action.” He also explained that “the difficulty is set to be challenging to a reasonable extent.”

Eve fighting an enemy in Stellar Blade

They elaborate that players may even struggle with some of the game’s bosses, which are absolutely monstrous both visually and mechanically. So, if you were hoping that Stellar Blade is a souls-like, you’ll be disappointed. However, if you were hoping for a more arcadey action experience, you may be similarly let down.

Is Stellar Blade Difficult?

Yes, Stellar Blade is a difficult game, at least on the standard difficulty. If you’re not used to this style of combat, you may struggle, especially against some of the bosses. However, you can change the difficulty at any time to the Story Mode option, which makes the game significantly easier.

Story Mode comes with Action Assist. This is a helpful tool that slows down combat when enemies attack, allowing you to get used to their attack pattern and understand when best to counterattack. Additionally, the game will display exactly when you should parry or dodge, essentially making it almost impossible to get hit.

We recommend you use the Action Assist feature to help you get to grips with Stellar Blade’s combat. However, it’s probably not the best way to play the game completely. If you want to get the full Stellar Blade experience, then you should switch back to the Normal difficulty once you’ve gotten to grips with combat. Don’t forget, you can always switch again later if things get too hard. Additionally, if you’re unsure whether or not it’s for you in the first place, there’s a free demo that features the start of the game, including a pretty challenging boss fight.

Finally, if you are worried it’ll be too easy, there is also a Hard mode that you can unlock by beating the game. So, no matter what level of skill you have for action games, you’re sure to enjoy Stellar Blade. That’s everything you need to know about whether Stellar Blade is a souls-like. For more guides just like this one, be sure to check out our Guide Hub.

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