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

game news While waiting for Assassin’s Creed Hexe, I went over 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 yet, Blacktail invites you to discover the origins of the famous Baba Yaga through a game of exploration and action. I take you with me on an adventure as magical as it is macabre.

Baba Yaga, don’t you know? This iconic figure from Slavic legends is sometimes depicted as a child-eating ogress or a beautiful exiled witch. She made many children tremble and continues to enliven Slavic evenings by the fireplace. Personally, these types 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 Baba Yaga’s, we touched on a subject that fascinates me even more: witchcraft. For this reason also at the time of the announcements of the 15th anniversary of the Assassin’s Creed license, the project that most caught my attention is not at all the one that takes us to Japan but the cryptic Assassin’s Creed Hexe, which a priori should talk about witchcraft. . But I’ll have to be patient as we don’t know anything about this rather special Assassin’s Creed and therefore it’s hard to imagine a release anytime soon. So, inevitably, we resort to what we can. And I set my sights on the first game of The Parasight, featured 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 is based on free will and magic. And obviously, I’m not the only one intrigued, since 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 answer.

This is an independent review on JV:

There’s Wanted, your new column on 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 some 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 of looking for her. Especially since it’s hard to keep your bearings, alone in this enchanted forest. The townspeople 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 people will stop calling me a witch. It’s absurd isn’t it? Wielding 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’s nice to navigate, it’s still hostile. To survive, I have to look for food but also defend myself from 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. Also, I often get lost in the nature that surrounds me, by dint of looking for branches, flowers, feathers or boboks. When I say lose myself, it is not negative. I really enjoy discovering every corner of my new home. I lose myself in her with pleasure simply because she is so charming.

There is something emerging from this forest. We feel that she is not really like the others.. Populated by gnolls, rushmans, and even wasps, it has that folkloric side to it that makes it stand out from the crowd. A mixture of magic and putrefaction, bright colors and morbid darkness… How 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 that populate these places that will contradict this sentiment. Between the Machiavellian Ant Queen or the lost Mr. Larva, without forgetting Bovy Borko, Rebelle or even Jack the Eel mushrooms, they all seem to have come out of a psychedelic dream, either because of their personalities or because of their atypical looks. And if I want sweetness, I can even count on the black cat that follows me everywhere through this gigantic forest. Always there as soon as I take food near the fire or recharge batteries in front of an altar, its weak meow sometimes guides me when I don’t know where to go anymore.

And Zora in all this? I’m still looking for her… Sometimes I feel like I should know where she is, a weird feeling. And these constant nightmares don’t help. It’s always the same, always the same strange cabin. But yesterday, reality prevailed 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 others will be 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 like she’s trying to bring me closer to the dark side. His pettiness never runs out and I recognize that he easily manages to make me regress towards selfishness and hatred towards others. But something tells me that my actions will not 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 villagers suspect that I helped. 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 guide me on the right path to finally find my sister… Who knows…


Explore, create, evolve

Let’s put our young Yaga aside for a moment if you don’t mind telling yourself a little about the game. Blacktail is not a visual novel or a narrative game, favorite genres of this type of article. Therefore, it is difficult to explain its gameplay 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 RPG elements, a consequence system based on your choices but also on your actions and a world that unlocks new abilities to metroidvania. Certainly, these mechanics are not necessarily very original, but they are very well articulated and allow to offer an attractive and balanced experience. Just a rather unusual point: the lack of an XP system. To develop new skills, it will be necessary to gather particular resources. Naturally, this makes you want to venture into every corner of the map, which, as you will have understood, is already very pleasant to navigate.

Despite everything, it is difficult to get a serious idea of ​​a title like this with only an hour of play. (a priori, a dozen are needed to finish the main story). Which is why, for once, I took a look at Metacritic. With 6 reviews on PC (the platform I released the game on), it gets the fine score of 80, the equivalent of a 16 with us. Note that on PS5, there are only 4 reviews on record and they are less than flattering, bringing the score down to 73. And, in truth, not very surprising. The black tail is not perfect. The combat system is not always very fast-paced, at least at first. Add to that a strawberry AI and you get a game that quickly reaches its limits on the action side. However, its easy handling, its fluidity and its charming universe at all levels have made me forget about these few flaws. This will probably put some off, but for a first game, it’s far from embarrassing. Especially since the Poles from The Parasight managed to do more: They make you want to dive back into its title to unravel all its mysteries. In this sense, it is already a bit of a victory that is worth dwelling on.

Blacktail is an action-exploration game that captivates with its cryptic universe and story. Folktale lovers, this game has everything to please you, but it can also find favor with lovers of exploration and new adventures. Blacktail is out now on PC, PS5, and Xbox Series.


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