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Have You Played... Gods?

The Dark Souls of its day?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day, perhaps for all time.

Quite possibly the videogame I've put the most hours into without seeing more than a couple of levels. The Bitmap Brothers' Greek mythology-themed (but only in the loosest possible sense) action-platformer was exacting and unforgiving, dirty and brutal in a way that colourful peers like Mario and Sonic were not.

That was the appeal of course - it looked darker and grittier and even more 'realistic' (trying to evoke the Simon Bisley art on the box), and it involved an intensely muscled hero throwing knives and shuriken at assorted demons. This was platforming for grown-ups, we told ourselves.

Perhaps it was, or perhaps this was an early example of the now well-documented mentality that overcoming a certain kind of videogame difficulty somehow represents broader moral fibre. In fairness, I was young and had coordination issues at that age, so Gods' precision action was an extra challenge, but nonetheless I threw myself against its rocks time and time again, entirely consumed by fascination for its wordless, grimy but legend-strewn world.

The Dark Souls of its time? Maybe, just maybe. But Gods had a much better theme tune.

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Alec Meer avatar

Alec Meer


Ancient co-founder of RPS. Long gone. Now mostly writes for rather than about video games.