XBOX REVIEW | Lords Of Exile

“Lords of Exile brings back classic gameplay incredibly well”

I, like many of my fellow Xennials, sometimes feel the heavy weight of nostalgia on our collective souls. Nostalgia that can usually be satiated with the odd retro title here and there, but sometimes that isn’t enough. Sometimes we need new retro! Lords of Exile delivers what can only be called a brand-new old-school game, giving us hints of Castlevania, Shinobi, ESWAT, and more. The game itself is linear in design, but don’t let that lull you into a false sense of security. You will have to learn all of the enemies’ movements and avoid a lot of traps and falls. Lords of Exile brings back classic gameplay incredibly well, but I will say that it most likely won’t be to everyone’s tastes. Go into it with an open mind and if, like me, you grew up in the 80’s and 90’s, you may just find yourself having an absolute blast.

ℹ️ Reviewed on Xbox Series X | Review code provided by PR/publisher, this review is the personal opinion of the writer. Got unanswered questions about this game? Get in touch on X!

DeveloperSquidbit Works
PublisherPID Games, PixelHeart

Pay no attention to the giant head behind the wall

Things I liked!

  • Classic Platformer | There is so much to enjoy about this game. The classic platforming action is just perfect. It’s hard to get through each level the first time, and you feel a sense of achievement with every boss battle you beat. A lot of folks might go into this game expecting something more modern, like a lot of Metroidvania games that are out now, but this really is old-school classic platformer gaming at its modern best. Rage and practice, practice and rage until you get good enough to sail through each level over and over, like we did back in the day.
  • Graphics | You can tell a lot of thought has been put into the overall look and design of this game, you could just imagine this being an original Megadrive/Genesis title back in the day. The enemies, the backgrounds, the huge end of level bosses, everything is just so delightfully retro. The developers could have made everything look modern and polished, but in keeping the aesthetic as it is I think they did a wonderful job.

Don’t look behind you!

Neither good nor bad

  • Music | Like with all retro-style games, the music can become a wee bit annoying after the umpteenth time hearing it, but that’s not to say it’s bad. In fact, the soundtrack to Lords of Exile is actually pretty decent, but sometimes situations can cause you to associate a tune with failure, like when you are hit in mid-air over a platform. Aside from that though, as a soundtrack for a retro platformer goes, it’s not too bad at all.
  • Story | I will be honest and say that even without knowing the story line of the game, you will still have a blast playing Lords of Exile. The story itself isn’t great or terrible, it’s just a typical ‘Monsters arrive in country, it’s up to generic hero to rescue everyone’ affair, but what you have to remember is, that back in the day you kinda made up the game story yourself based on tiny snippets of info, so it’s not really necessary to have a huge world building epic for a game like this.

Another beautiful day

Things I disliked!

  • I need more | That’s it really, it’s a great wee game and I want to play more, I hope the developers have a sequel in mind for us.

How long did I play the review before publishing? 10 hours
How long to beat the story? 4 hours
How many Achievements did I earn before publishing? 10/14
You’ll love this game if you like these | Castlevania, Shinobi


86/100 ⭐ An awesome retro-style platformer with a lot to come back for, play it with or without nostalgic eyes and you are still going to find something that will appeal to you.