Salt and Sanctuary Hits the Switch Next Month

Salt and Sanctuary Switch

Nintendo Switches are about to get salty and so are you.

2D Soulslike Salt and Sanctuary from Ska Studios is on the way to the portable platform in just a little over a week. The game will release on the eshop for $17.99 on August 2nd; Salt and Sanctuary: Drowned Tome Edition will head to retail this holiday. According to the press release, the game has already enjoyed over 800,000 downloads. A release on the Switch will no doubt bump those numbers.

“The two of us wanted to create a Soulslike game that we wanted to play, and finding that so many others who wanted it too warmed our dark little hearts,” said Michelle and James Silva, co-creators at Ska Studios. “Bringing Salt and Sanctuary to the Nintendo Switch means more people who like dismal, satisfying games can play our very dismal, satisfying game.”

From the release:

While sailing across a stormy sea to transport a princess and strike a truce between rival kingdoms, a calamitous encounter with a sinister abomination wrecks the player’s ship. Upon drifting onto the shore, the journey to broker peace dissolves into a struggle for survival on a treacherous island rife with undead.

Whether braving this alone or with a friend via local co-op, the customizable hero, known as the Saltborn, can only persevere by navigating this grim, forgotten bastion. Pressing on and cleaving through anyone or anything that rears its malformed head is the only way forward. Hidden platforming abilities including air-dashing and wall-jumping help the Saltborn find and eradicate more than twenty horrifying bosses all drawn in Ska Studios’ stylized signature art style.

Discovering the truth behind this cursed land necessitates both a keen eye and a bloodlust, but all manner of implements of death await adventurers. All character builds are worthy: a whip-wielding, crossbow-brandishing bandit and sorcerer wreathed in Fire and Sky magic have equal chances of survival. Sixteen weapon types and more than fifty sets of armor that both strengthen the Saltborn and visibly change their appearance can be upgraded with the right equipment. A massive skill tree provides further options for progression.

Battles play out in a tough-but-fair fashion. Every swing of the sword drains stamina, so calculated attacks often win out over desperate flails. Magic wielders have their own tribulations: all of the games’ spells align with either Fire or Sky elements and casting too much of one causes an imbalance that damages the Saltborn. Holy Prayers don’t have an element but offer defensive boosts. Each harrowing skirmish rewards patience.

Multiple endings and New Game+ provide ample reasons to play again. While playing as a different character build alone changes the gameplay entirely, optional challenge runs offer distinct new trials for players still hungering for battle after finishing the story. Modes like permadeath, no blocking, and no rolling alter playstyles and keep Salt and Sanctuary fresh long after the credits roll.

In our review, we said “Salt and Sanctuary’s symphony of engaging and challenging gameplay fully grasped my soul throughout restless nights, keeping me hooked for over twenty hours.” Perhaps it’s time I finally give this one a shot.

               
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