Ender Lilies: Quietus of the Knights is one of those games that you probably missed in Early Access, but now it's finally completed, you should give it a try. It might not be the longest or hardest game ever, but it fuses two popular genres to create something unique that will surely prove a tough challenge: Metroidvania gameplay and Souls-like bosses... do we have your attention now?
The Amnesiac Priestess
Although it's a really fun and challenging game, one of the things we enjoyed the most about Ender Lilies is its story. The protagonist is Lily, an amnesic young priestess that seems almost too pure to be running around in this nightmarish context. Okay, she's the main character, but Lily is not the one doing all the fighting; when you're an almost ethereal figure, there's nothing better than to have warrior spirits defending you! That's right, it's none other than the undead spirit of the Umbral Knight who will, hopefully, help us stop the Blight and save whatever remains alive outside.
Lily's past and destiny are revealed in short flashback scenes every time we defeat a boss, but these memories also teach you a little more about who these heroes corrupted by the Blight were before becoming grotesque creatures from hell. It's not the first time we have seen this kind of narrative, but Ender Lilies does a splendid job at introducing these bosses and explaining the ties that connect them with Lily.
Behold the Blight
While Lily was asleep in ruined a chamber, the kingdom of Land’s End was devastated by an intense, cursed rain that they called the Blight, corrupting the souls of those who came in contact with it and destroying everything in its path. We don't want to spoil anything, but the distressing environments and character's backgrounds are very well done, giving this platforming game an extra layer of depth.
Ender Lilies: Quietus of the Knights' plot could easily be summarized in a couple of lines, and Lily's importance wouldn't be diminished one bit. It even sounds like the prototype of a 100-hour long JRPG! Still, this is a short game with some complexity in its RPG mechanics, yet its greatest difficulty lies in the complexity of the boss fights. As it always happens with difficult games, some will love these Souls-inspired encounters, while others will never be ready for such intense challenges.
There are hundreds of indie and mainstream Metroidvania games, yet if you focus on the most successful ones, most of them take advantage of dark stories and gothic imaginary. What's interesting about Ender Lilies is how it applies this formula but comes up with a fresh combat system that involves several spirits with their own offensive and defensive patterns. Exploring every corner of the map is necessary, but mastering how and when to use your protective spirits is critical.
All in all, Ender Lilies: Quietus of the Knights is a fabulous game that caters to the regular Metroidvania audience, especially those who enjoy hardcore boss fights, but also the speedrunning community. If you trust your skills and would like to try a punishing yet gorgeous-looking title, Ender Lilies: Quietus of the Knights is currently available on all modern platforms.