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While waiting for Assassin’s Creed Hexe, I retraced the story of the witch Baba Yaga in the FPS Blacktail

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While waiting for Assassin’s Creed Hexe, I retraced the story of the witch Baba Yaga in the FPS Blacktail
Written by madishthestylebar

Game News While waiting for Assassin’s Creed Hexe, I retraced the story of the witch Baba Yaga in the FPS Blacktail

Put yourself in the shoes of one of the most emblematic witches of Slavic folklore, do you like it? Better still, Blacktail invites you to discover the origins of the famous Baba Yaga through an exploration and action game. I take you with me on an adventure as magical as it is macabre.

Baba Yaga, don’t you know? This emblematic figure of Slavic legends is sometimes represented as a child-devouring ogress or a pretty exiled witch. She made many children tremble and continues to animate Slavic evenings by the fireside. Personally, these kinds of myths have always captivated me. Knowing around which stories different civilizations have built their beliefs, their traditions and their ways of life is simply fascinating. And with that of Baba Yaga, we touch on a subject that fascinates me all the more: witchcraft. This is also why at the time of the announcements for the 15th anniversary of the Assassin’s Creed license, the project that most caught my attention was absolutely not the one taking us to Japan but the cryptic Assassin’s Creed Hexe , which should a priori speak of witchcraft. But I’m going to have to be patient since we don’t know anything about this rather special Assassin’s Creed and therefore difficult to imagine a near release. So inevitably, we fall back on what we can. And I set my sights on The Parasight’s first game, unveiled at Summer Game Fest 2021: Blacktail. Precisely the latter takes us on board to discover the origins of the Baba Yaga through an FPS that relies on free will and magic. And obviously, I’m not the only one to have been intrigued, since the publisher Focus has decided to oversee the project. Today, we invite you to discover the fruit of this collaboration. How did Baba Yaga become the wicked witch everyone knows? Here is The Parasight’s response.

This is an indie review on JV:

There’s Wanted, your new column about quirky and fun indie games, and there’s this column. It is dedicated to the games that we want you to discover, in a slightly more personal register, like a ticket and with a few video extracts.


My name is Yaga, Baba Yaga

Another day away from my sister, Zora… It’s been days or maybe even weeks since she disappeared… I’ve lost count from looking for her. Especially since it is difficult to keep your bearings, alone in this enchanted forest. The people of the village don’t like me very much. According to them, I am a vile witch who indulges in the magic of black magic… All because of a simple birthmark on my face. It’s to hide it that I wear a mask, hoping that this way people will stop calling me a witch. It’s absurd isn’t it? Handle the bow like no other, that’s my only skill and there’s nothing magical about it. It must be said that since my exile, I have had no other choice. This enchanted forest is my only refuge. But if it is pleasant to browse, it remains hostile. To survive, I have to hunt for food but also defend myself against the dangerous and mystical creatures that inhabit these places. Inevitably, I became an outstanding archer. I even make my own arrows and some concoctions to get me out of trouble. I feel a bit like a survivor or an explorer. Besides, I often get lost in the surrounding nature, by dint of looking for branches, flowers, feathers or boboks. When I say losing myself, it’s not negative. I enjoy discovering every corner of my new home, really. I get lost in it with pleasure quite simply because she is most charming.

There is something that emerges from this forest. We feel that she is not really like the others. Populated by gnolls, rushmans and even hornets, it has this folkloric side that makes it stand out from the crowd. A mixture of magic and putridity, shimmering colors and morbid darkness… Strange, isn’t it, that I like it so much? I feel like I’m in the middle of a fairy tale. Alice in Wonderland. And it is not the colorful characters who populate these places that will contradict this feeling. Between the Machiavellian Ant Queen or the lost Mr. Larva, not forgetting Bovy Borko, Rebelle or even Jack the Eel mushrooms, they all seem to come out of a psychedelic dream, whether because of their personalities. or their atypical looks. And if I want sweetness, I can even count on the black cat who follows me everywhere through this gigantic forest. Always there as soon as I take sustenance near the fire or recharge my batteries in front of an altar, its weak meowing sometimes guides me when I no longer really know where to go.

And Zora in all this? I’m still looking for her… Sometimes I feel like I should know where she is, a strange feeling. And these constant nightmares don’t help. It’s always the same thing, always the same strange cabin. But yesterday, reality took precedence over nightmares. I found this famous hut… And since then, nothing is like before. I feel animated by a strange force, like magic. Some parts of the forest are now accessible to me and I feel that others will be as well as I get stronger. The voice in my head is there to guide me, to teach me how to use all these new possibilities available to me. But I also feel that she is trying to bring me closer to the dark side. Her pettiness is never exhausted and I admit that she easily manages to make me flinch towards selfishness and hatred of others. But something tells me my actions won’t go unpunished, or at least there will be consequences. And then there are these spirits of missing children who invite me to follow them. These children kidnapped by the forest witch whom the inhabitants of the village suspect me of helping. Why did you come to me? Where do they want to take me? All these unanswered questions push me to unravel this new mystery. Maybe he will lead me on the right track to finally find my sister… Who knows…


Explore, craft, evolve

Let’s leave our young Yaga aside for a bit if you don’t mind to tell you a little about gameplay. Blacktail is not a visual novel or a narrative game, favorite genres of this kind of articles. It is therefore difficult to explain its gameplay to you from the point of view of the young witch. Especially since he is surprisingly rich. VYou will understand, Blacktail is a game that emphasizes exploration, with action and survival phases. You can add to that RPG elements, a system of consequences based on your choices but also your actions and a world that unlocks over new skills à la metroidvania. Certainly, these mechanics are not necessarily very original, but they articulate very well and make it possible to offer an engaging and balanced experience. Only rather unusual point: the lack of an XP system. To develop new abilities, it will be necessary to gather particular resources. Naturally, this makes you want to venture into every corner of the map which is, as you will have understood, already very pleasant to browse.

Despite everything, difficult to get a serious idea of ​​such a title with only an hour of play. (a priori, it takes a dozen to finish the main story). Which is why, for once, I took a look at Metacritic. With 6 reviews on PC (platform on which I launched the game), it obtains the fine score of 80, the equivalent of a 16 with us. Note that on PS5, there are only 4 recorded reviews and they are less flattering, bringing the score down to 73. And in truth, it’s not very surprising. Blacktail is not perfect. The combat system is not always very thrilling, at least at first. Add to that a strawberry AI and you get a game that quickly reaches its limits on the action side. Nevertheless, its easy handling, its fluidity and its charming universe on all levels have managed to make me forget these few flaws. These will probably put off some, but for a first game, it’s far from shameful. Especially since the Poles from The Parasight managed to do the most: make you want to dive back into their title to unravel all its mysteries. In this sense, it is already a bit of a victory on which it is worth lingering.

Blacktail is an exploration and action game that captivates with its cryptic universe and story. Lovers of folk tales, this game has everything to please you, but may also find favor in the eyes of lovers of exploration and new adventures. Blacktail is already available on PC, PS5 and Xbox Series.


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