Comedy = Greek Tragedy + Time – Let’s Play Hades

And no, this LP was not made by Homer.

Zagreus, the son of Hades, is fed up with his home life and has decided to flee the underworld. But despite his detached attitude towards the boy, Hades has no intention of making this escape easy. Zagreus’s path is heavily guarded by the wretches of the underworld, as well as certain other powerful figures. Thankfully for Zagreus, Nyx has called the gods of Olympus and asked for their aid. Even if indirect, Zagreus’s family will lend their power in hopes of seeing him to safety.

There’s a pretty good chance you’ve heard of Supergiant Games from their previous titles, (Bastion, Transistor, or Pyre,) and an even better chance you’ve heard of this one as well. Hades was in early access on the Epic Games store, then on Steam, then released officially on September 17th, 2020. With about two year’s of development with player feedback, Hades released to extremely positive reception, with praise for just about every aspect of it, from the gameplay to the writing. And all that with a good work environment and no crunch. Who would have guessed! (Most people)

Hades is a Roguelike game where the goal is to clear each room of enemies, and collect the dropped reward before moving on. Amongst other treasures and items, Zagreus can find icons with which to contact various gods from the Greek pantheon, each of which grants a small selection of abilities for a given run. But while fighting through the underworld can be mechanically robust, the other major draw of the game is the sheer amount and quality of character writing. When picking up an icon for the first time on a run, the associated god will have something to say to the Underworld’s Prince. And when you die, (and you will,) your return trip to the House of Hades will also give you an opportunity to chat with a group of friendly characters, (and Hades himself,) before your next foray into action territory.

This is a first-time run of Hades, and so while my spoiler policy is normally “don’t,” it’s now “double don’t.” I am ahead of what’s recorded, but I still don’t want anything story-related given away until I actually get to it on camera. If you want to discuss game mechanics that haven’t shown up yet, please use spoiler tags.

Episodes


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Zagreus attempts a cool cold-open escape from Tartarus, only to be stopped by his relative inexperience and lack of powerups. Dad is not amused.

One defeat against Megaera won’t stop Zagreus, who takes a second and third crack and getting out of Tartarus. Dad is still not amused.