The Last Hero of Nostalgaia from Over The Moon Games and Coatsink is an interesting Soulslike that manages to stand out from the crowd. Find out why in our The Last Hero of Nostalgaia review!
The Last Hero of Nostalgaia from Over The Moon Games and Coatsink is an interesting Soulslike that manages to stand out from the crowd. It’s a satirical action RPG in which you’ll explore the world of video games. Nostalgaia had become… unwelcoming to new heroes and those who assist them. The world of video games has become too obsessed with nostalgia and retro styles and is currently collapsing back into its pixel origins. Can you save the world of video games before it’s too late?
But before your journey begins, you’ll first need to take care of some character customization! After selecting your hero’s name, the next step will be to use the sliders for each available characteristic to select how you want your character to end up. If you’re familiar with 3D Soulslike experiences, you’ll know what to expect. The options include skin color, body type, age, accessories, tattoos, nose width, eye style, jaw width, endowment, and hairstyle. Sounds like the usual, right? Except that the character customization screen looks like this:
The good news is that you will be able to customize your experience by selecting one of the available classes for your character, which will have an effect on its attributes and starting armor. The options are Datadin, Formatter, Resolutionary, Sourcerer, and Randomaster. The Datadin is a noble and stalwart defender of order who favors vitality, giving you a well-rounded option. The Formatter is a brutal savage who wields heavy weapons, thus favoring strength in order to deal as much damage as possible with each blow.
The Resolutionary is an idealist, a swift and evasive outsider who favors dexterity in order to strike quickly before its opponent has a chance to retaliate. The Sourcerer is a channeler of Nostalgaia’s primal energies, thus favoring Source, which is this world’s version of magic, this transcending reality as we know it. The last one is the Randomaster, a scoundrel who specializes in critical hits, backstabs, and parries thanks to its considerably high luck, which is perfect for those of you who want to risk it all with each strike.
Once you’re dropped into the first dungeon, you’ll control your character with the left analog stick as you use the right one to move the camera around as needed. If you press in on the left analog stick, your character will be able to sprint. Press the X button to interact. The L1 button will be used to block so that you can hopefully time things right to avoid some extra damage. The Circle button on its own will make your character quickly jump back to try and avoid an incoming attack. If pressed while holding down a direction on the left analog stick, your character will instead roll in that direction.
Pressing the R1 button will allow your character to perform a light attack. As expected, pressing the R2 button will instead unleash a slower but more powerful heavy attack. Oh, and be sure to press in on the right analog stick to lock on so that you can circle around an enemy without turning your back to it! Dodging, rolling, sprinting, or attacking will consume some of your stamina, which you can see as the yellow bar below your health at the upper left corner of the screen. Pressing the Square button will allow you to use your Heroic Icon to heal your wounds, as long as you have any in stock. You start with 3 uses, and these will be replenished when you reach the next checkpoint.
Any item that you collect will be added to your inventory. Once inside your inventory, you can press the Triangle button to toggle the item description so that you can learn more about what you’ve managed to collect. For example, the Heroic Icon is nothing more than a basic pixel, but it is thanks to your hero knowing its essence that it can use it to heal its wounds. Find a Green Herb, and you’ll learn it can slowly regenerate your health without any need to mix it with another one.
Spells that you obtain and use will consume Access – think of it as this world’s mana. Access is needed to tap into the mythical Source. You can only carry 20 Access at any given time. Any additional access that you find will be placed into storage. When you reach a Beacon and save your progress, any Access from storage will be taken. If you have none on you, then it will be refilled up to 10 Access.
As you defeat enemies and bosses, you’ll get to collect Memory, which functions as the experience points for The Last Hero of Nostalgaia. You’ll have to spend Memory to be able to level up, which is done at the Beacon. Rest at a beacon to heal your wounds, restock your Heroic Icon, and even tether your hero to that Beacon. When defeated, you’ll be sent back to the Beacon you are tethered to. Do know that interacting with a Beacon will make all enemies respawn! Since this is a Soulslike, that means that when you’re defeated – not if, but when – you’ll lose all Memory you were carrying. You do have one shot at recovering it if you manage to collect it at the exact spot where you died.
There are many items for you to find during your time with The Last Hero of Nostalgaia. Some of them will have a missing element that needs to be remembered, which is done by opening your inventory at the exact spot where a relic can be remembered. You’ll know it’s the right spot because a relic will start to vibrate in your inventory. Remembering a relic will make it stronger. And as an extra bonus, you’ll also gain permanent Insight Bonuses, which function as perks for your character. You can review these on the player stat screen. Without spoiling things too much, the first two Insight Bonuses that you can get are a boost to your overall health and an increased critical defense.
The game has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy for you to work on adding to your collection. And on top of that, this one is a Cross-Buy release, so if you own a PlayStation 5 console, you’ll be able to download both the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 versions of the game at no extra cost, with each version having its own separate trophy list. Said list is split into 24 Bronze trophies, 12 Silver trophies, and 3 Gold trophies. The Rise of Evil DLC also adds some extra trophies on top, with a lonely Bronze trophy, 3 Silver trophies, and an extra Gold trophy to consider.
What will you need to do to make those trophies pop? You’ll probably get your first trophy from being defeated. After that, there are trophies for losing five levels’ worth of Memory when dying, leveling up five times during a single visit to a Beacon, performing 20 backstabs, collecting every piece of armor, rune, and spell in the game, remembering every relic, and beating each of the game’s bosses. You’ll also have to speedrun the game so that you can complete the whole thing in less than 5 hours, which is probably going to have to wait for a second or third run so that you can first get to know what the world of The Last Hero of Nostalgaia will throw at you.
The Last Hero of Nostalgaia is a game that pays homage to the Soulslike genre, diving in particular into the Dark Souls well. It offers a satirical take on the world of video games and our yearning for nostalgia while still giving us the Soulslike gameplay loop that we know and love. The Last Hero of Nostalgaia is available as a Cross-Buy title, so your $24.99 purchase will give you Access to both the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 versions of the game at no extra cost. You can also go all-in and buy The Last Hero of Nostalgaia Deluxe Edition for $29.99, which includes the base game and The Rise of Evil DLC, saving you three bucks in the process.
This The Hero of Nostalgaia review is based on a PlayStation 5 copy provided by Coatsink.