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This Way Madness Lies

Zeboyd Digital Entertainment LLC, Limited Run Games
Nov 10, 2022 - PC, PlayStation 5, Nintendo Switch

OpenCritic Rating


Top Critic Average


Critics Recommend

PC Gamer
87 / 100
Gaming Nexus
9 / 10
Pure Nintendo
8.5 / 10
9 / 10
Digitally Downloaded
4.5 / 5
4 / 5
7 / 10
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This Way Madness Lies Media

This Way Madness Lies - Trailer #1 thumbnail

This Way Madness Lies - Trailer #1

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This Way Madness Lies Screenshot 2

Critic Reviews for This Way Madness Lies

A fun and engaging RPG with beautiful graphics and a bouncy pace.

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In an unexpected twist, I find myself immersed in a JRPG set in Shakespeare's realm, complete with nods to all kinds of other pop culture mainstays, like Sailor Moon. The writing is so good it's like a Shakespearean comedy; the twist of adding modern translation is just hilarious at times. Having to switch between the two styles of dialogue is like deciding between quill and keyboard - annoying at first, but it grows on you. The game's structure is more repetitive than I would like at times; exploration leaves a little bit to be desired too. Still, it's reminiscent of classic JRPG styles, making you feel like you're back in your nostalgic gaming heyday. Recommended for any RPG fan.

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An excellent snack-sized title for fans of Shakespeare, magical girls, or JRPGs in general.

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This May Madness Lies blends JRPG elements with the world of William Shakespeare. It has a lot going for it, from a humorous story to a wonderful 16-bit styling that smacks of classic '90s titles. It's not the toughest or longest title, but fans of anime, Shakespeare, or JRPGs in general, will find much enjoyment here.

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It seems as though the Zeboyd partnership is going on hiatus for a bit to recharge the batteries, but This Way Madness Lies is a nice game to go on break with. It's more of a sonnet than a full-on Shakespeare play, and the Switch definitely needs something short in this realm after some of the absolute marathons I've had to deal with recently.

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While it’s a stretch to call it a great and memorable game, because it doesn’t really do anything to stand out in terms of gameplay and design, the concept of This Way Madness Lies will stick with you. I would have perhaps liked a little more emphasis placed on the magical girl aesthetics, since, aside from the transformation sequences that doesn’t come across as well as it could have, visually, but that aside, this attempt at asking the question “what if Shakespeare invented magical girls?” is a resounding success. It is the perfect little game to play in between the endless stream of overweight content we now need to deal with.

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While I’m not sure I liked This Way Madness Lies more than their previous releases, this is still a really solid RPG, with witty humor, deep combat and fun story. This isn’t a very long game – you can wrap it up in about eight hours on the standard difficulty – but it’s quality and well worth the $9.99 asking price. If you are a fan of Zeboyd Games’ other releases, you should snag this up ASAP. You will find a lot to love here. If you haven’t played any of their other offerings, and love humorous RPGs, you should certainly give them a shot. You’ll be glad you did.

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Take to the stage with the Stratford-Upon-Avon High Drama Society to put on plays and cross dimensions saving the world of Shakespeare's canon from chaotic incursions.

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