Even though he was a tyrannical king, murdering him in his sleep only unleashed his sadistic heir on the kingdom and his vengeance upon them both – a visit to his best torturer on the deepest dungeon of the castle and a public hanging at the gallows. But not all is over as the otherworldly justice is not as black and white as one could imagine – Guedes and Gwendolyn find themselves in limbo where a Death’s minion gives them the option to stay there for eternity or guide the late king’s soul through a series of underworld mazes to his final resting place as a way to redeem themselves and gain salvation for their own souls.. and so, their adventure, our game and Hellguedes Chronicles begin!
Although officially the story goes something like the princess having to go with her fiancé through a series of underground mazes to lay his late father’s remains on an adequate sepulcher (and it can’t be just any, it has to be opulent enough for his royal taste! – yes, the king’s ghost is there and is annoying as hell XP) we decided that our story was better! And so we have Guedes (the guy) and Gwendolyn, with no complicated relation and only salvation as their objective. Also, having the supernatural background helps explain why the heck do we have to carry that coffin/ghost (I mean, if we were royalty there’s no way we should risk our necks for something like this! or at least not to the extent it’s demanded!) and all those challenging deep caves.
With the story part explained and the conviction that we did a better job at making one up we can move on XP Chariot is a couch co-op (our favourite kind) 2d platformer by Frima Studio that came out in 2014 and that we’ve been playing (on and off) on the ps3 for some time now – not because the game is too long but because, as the in-game saying goes, “cooperation can overcome anything, except a wall” (it may or may not be exactly like this, I’m recalling it from memory XP). And one particular wall we had to cross, with an explosive blueprints box on top of our carriage, proved quite challenging! Not to mention the lava levels that we’re in now… damn bastards! XP.
It’s an adventure best played with a friend not only because it’s both more fun/rewarding and more frustrating – with the advantage that you can immediately hit the other for any stupid mistake! XP – but also because there are areas and challenges that can only be completed with 2 players on board. As previously said, your main goal is to navigate through a series of caves in order to gather riches (fending off looter critters when needed – those greedy guys are attracted to any loud noises you make) and find a decent sepulcher for the king but the challenge, and originality of Chariot, comes with the fact that you have to drag the king’s coffin-on-wheels along. It’s not hard to maneuver your character, no, the hard part comes with learning to use your ropes, gadgets and physics to make your cargo progress smoothly – soon you’ll get the rhythm and hang of it but don’t trust it too much as there are several levels with environmental variations that will easily send your tactics out of the window in no time! Besides the obvious riches scattered around there are collectible skulls to find and blueprints to improve your gadgets – as you can only bring one along per character, choosing the right one and improving it is essential – as well as time trials and 2 to 3 different entrances to each level that grant access to different areas and allow the completionists to get 100% on exploration.
Even if simple in concept, there’s little doubt that Chariot is a challenging and fun game with a decent amount of content and play time that will make platform lovers very happy! We still haven’t finished it but we’re hoping to get our souls from limbo soon enough!