One of the biggest Devolver Digital games I got to preview on the PAX East 2022 show floor was Cult of the Lamb. Developed by Massive Monster, the title was the centerpiece of the Devolver Digital booth, playing on a huge screen and closed off to the public from Thursday to Saturday. I was lucky enough to try out the adventure on a comfy couch. What I found was a randomly generated world full of monsters to battle and cult followers to keep happy.
The Dead Have Risen in Cult of the Lamb
Cult of the Lamb starts off with your character, the titular lamb, heading off to be sacrificed by a cult in order to stop some prophecy from coming true. Unfortunately for them, a supernatural being saves you from being killed at the last minute. You can keep on living if you dedicate your life to them and spread their good word. So you return with a sword and a demonic glow and kill the lackeys that were trying to off you.
This roguelite is basically two things. It’s a combat-driven action RPG with randomized levels, plus it is a management simulator where you care for the followers of your cult. (Although, I was told to expect the main game to focus more on the former than the latter.) The battle system is pretty straightforward. Enemies flash before coming in to attack you, so you can utilize a dodge roll to avoid getting hit. You can go on the offensive with a slash from your currently equipped weapon, too. The game keeps you on your toes with its enemy variety, like hooded figures, nasty worms, and flying bats. And it’s quite fast-paced.
As you make your way through the various dungeons on offer, you’ll find currency, other weapons to smite baddies, and elemental effects for them (like a flaming shot that comes out of the tip of your sword). Tarot cards can also be obtained that give you boosts, though you have to pick between two each time. Resources are also on offer, which you need to build up your base.
A Friend in Need Is a Friend Indeed
Speaking of your base, it can be filled with followers you rescue in Cult of the Lamb‘s dungeons. These animal followers can be customized with different colors and skins and can be ordered to gather resources for you. You can gather resources yourself as well, by mining rocks and chopping down trees. During my time with the demo, I made a cooking fire for my cult so that they could be well fed. A caring ruler is an efficient one, after all. I was also tasked with gaining more followers and building a shrine to myself, but my demo timed out before completing my goal. It sounded cool, though.
Cult of the Lamb was a lot of fun in preview. For someone like me that does not adore roguelikes, it kept me engaged with its entertaining gameplay and wild plot. It’s also wonderfully animated and looks like a demented Saturday morning cartoon. Look for it to launch this year on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X | S, and PC via Steam.