Top Critic Average
Vambrace: Cold Soul creates a compelling fantasy world for fans of the genre. However, progression can be slow due to the heavy reliance on RNG, which can be frustrating for some.
Be warned Vambrace: Cold Soul starts out challenging. If you realize what you're getting yourself into, and go in expecting that you'll die quite a bit early on, then your persistence will lead to a fun, visually beautiful and rewarding experience.
If winter never came for you, then it's here now. Vambrace: Cold Soul does a fine job in its atmosphere and has the lore built around it that's believable and easy to get into. It's a harsh world and death could come easily. It's even more enjoyable thanks to the fantastic artwork and dozens of outfits to unlock. The turn-based battles aren't groundbreaking, but they're enough to present a challenge at the very least. What's impressive about Vambrace is its world. Every character has something new to say after every event and so much of it can be missed. Depending on your choices, you will get one of three different endings. The people you meet along the way play a huge role in what's to be seen. Even with its flaws, Vambrace: Cold Soul is a chilling ride that many players could warm up to.
Vambrace: Cold Soul is not a game for everyone: it can be harsh, cruel, and even unfair at times. Should players rise to the challenge, however, they will find a great blend of brutal gameplay and interesting storytelling.
Overall, whether playing on a keyboard or with a controller from the couch, Vambrace: Cold Soul is an adventure worth having. While not being an RPG in the traditional leveling up sense, there's plenty here to enjoy and the experience itself while being dark and snowy is still a very pretty one to look at with its choice of color palette.
There are costumes to earn from sidequests and achievements to earn that unlock in-game art, but there's no new game plus to expedite the process. That said, there are a few times when you get to make key decisions that affect the story slightly and reward you with different costumes, so there is some incentive to return. Turn-based RPG enthusiasts and those who wanted more story out of Darkest Dungeon will find a lot to like here, but those who want a more streamlined or directed experience are given the cold shoulder.
All in all, what Vambrace: Cold Soul tries to do, it does well. It’s a beautifully crafted game, both visually and through its lore-rich story. What it lacks is the challenge and depth that is so clearly prevalent in the other dungeon-crawling rogue-likes that it has heavily drawn its influences from. It’s a good game, but the fact that it is so heavily inspired by Darkest Dungeon but doesn’t fully embraces the mechanics or quality that made that game so great, is what stops Vambrace: Cold Soul from being a real heavy hitter of the rogue-like genre.
Vambrace: Cold Soul is not a bad game. However, in addition to over-requested bugs and downfalls, the player must deal with a difficulty he may not be willing to. Even in the easiest way things are difficult, so think carefully before you buy it.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Vambrace: Cold Soul will surely keep you entertained and engaged if you prefer roguelike games. Unfortunately, bland combat, interface and info issues, along with some save file problems can hamper your enjoyment.
Vambrace Cold Soul is very much like Darkest Dungeon, but a lot simpler and less complicated. The visuals and art design are totally gorgeous and the story is dark and cold, but The gameplay has not so much depth or uniqueness to offer. The main audience of Vambrace Cold Soul would be the ones who enjoy turn-based combats and dungeon crawling vibes.
Review in Persian | Read full review
Vambrace is a successful evolution of the mechanics that made Darkest Dungeon such a hit, but despite its beautiful art style and interesting setting, the repetitive gameplay and lack of meaningful achievements make the experience for more tiresome than challenging.
I liked Vambrace: Cold Soul, but it's certainly not for everyone. It requires more patience than many gamers can afford, and that's even among those who are already into roguelikes. If you can settle into its groove, however (and won't lose it when you're sucker-punched right out of that groove), there's some good, challenging fun to be had here.
If the art style and graphic execution are superb, its soundtrack fits the environment perfectly and the plot is carefully crafted, the gameplay experience falls short of expectations and as an RPG, it feels like a rather banal effort. While certainly not a bad game, Vambrance: Cold Soul gives the impression that it could be much more but instead, it doesn't leave the territory of an average experience, without any gameplay elements that would make it stand out.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Vambrace: Cold Soul lacks the kind of depth that more appealing RPG and perma-death titles offer. Regardless, Vambrace looks gorgeous and does offer that first step into the challenging world of perma-death games.
Sky-high ambition meets sub-par execution in this roguelike fantasy-epic. Vambrace: Cold Soul delivers a large helping of worldbuilding but fails to provide engaging gameplay to accompany it.
Although the developers' love for the craft and medium is on full display at all times, Vambrace: Cold Soul does suffer considerably from just how much it proudly lifts from other titles.
The roguelike nature of Darkest Dungeon combine with more substantial narrative and exploration, and a Korean manhwa aesthetic. Unfortunately, the mechanics of Vambrace need work. Your squad of mercenaries is largely disposable, there's too much randomization in terms of progress, and there are several issues with the user interface. Perhaps a sequel can bring the gameplay closer to the excellent aesthetics, but Vambrace: Cold Soul doesn't come together completely.
This is, for the most part, a disappointment. By no means a terrible game, Vambrace: Cold Soul plays it a bit too safe with its concepts, as most of them are straight up copied from better tactical rogue-likes and RPGs, and especially Darkest Dungeon. Gorgeous character design can only get you so far...
Vambrace: Cold Soul is a project that uses the mechanics of Darkest Dungeon in the hope of marrying them with anime style and a good plot. Restrictions spoil the gameplay, turning it into a worship of grind and pure chance. Devespresso Games released a variety of patches, but it didn't really help...
Review in Russian | Read full review
Vambrace: Cold Soul is by no means a bad game. It's far too derivative and simple to reach the same league as Darkest Dungeon as a classic, but it's an enjoyable time waster, with superb production values and neat, clean, classical turn based combat action. The best way to play the game is probably on the Nintendo Switch, too, since it's the kind of background noise that works while you've got the sport or a movie on TV.
Vambrace: Cold Soul is not bad, but it quickly becomes a mindless, repetitive, grinding slog of the same battles that require very little strategy, not to mention the lack of any sort of enemy variety.
Vambrace: Cold Souls is one of the best-looking games we've seen on Switch – it really is a stunner – but in terms of gameplay, it's a pedestrian affair. Dungeons are boring and difficult, combat is bereft of any real strategic depth or flair and it thinks nothing of wasting hours of your time for zero reward. The story gets off to a cracking start and it's obvious that an amazing amount of artistic talent has been channelled into creating the City of Icenaire and its surroundings, but, in the end, it's all rendered a little pointless by the fact it's attached to such a monotonous and dreary plod of an RPG.