5 Changes That Would Make ‘Lies of P’ Absolutely Perfect

An Almost Perfect Soulslike

Fans of Soulslike games have enthusiastically embraced Neowiz’ Lies of P. It isn’t hard to understand why. The game captures all the elements that make FromSoftware’s products so popular. Lies of P has a strong narrative that grows in complexity, incredible level and artistic design and, most critically, excellent combat. There are dozens of Soulslikes — that estimate is certainly low — but Lies of P deciphers the secret sauce of Dark Souls, Bloodborne and Sekiro better than just about any game to date. There are levels and bosses in Lies of P that rival any of those from FromSoft’s games. Many players and critics have noted Lies of P’s intensely challenging combat, and for good reason.

But, like even the best pizza or your best buddy, nothing’s perfect. Lies of P is an incredible first pass at the genre from a relatively unknown developer. It has some flaws, though. Nothing so bad as to truly ruin the experience, but a handful of annoyances and possibly misguided design decisions that are impossible not to notice. Many of these might be addressed in upcoming patches, DLC or sequels. The game hints strongly that the next subject for treatment is The Wizard of Oz. It makes clear that the premise of using Pinocchio for a subject is not just an oddball choice, but a genius move. There are endless other fairy tales and similar stories that could generate entries in this new franchise.

Here are five changes to Lies of P that Neowiz should consider in future updates or products.

Make the Perfect Guard (Slightly) More Forgiving

In large part, combat in Lies of P asks for aggressiveness and the ability to deflect attacks, which the game calls Perfect Guard. Simply blocking works some of the time, though it takes off a chunk of player health. Some attacks, though, can’t be blocked but instead call for a perfectly time deflect. Get enough of these and the enemy becomes prone to being staggered. It’s incredibly satisfying when done successfully.

Unfortunately, the mechanic is extremely unforgiving and requires superhuman timing, made even more difficult by bosses and elite enemies with hard-to-read attacks. The solution is simple: add a few frames to the Perfect Guard to help make it more accessible. The developers have already extended the length of an enemy’s stagger in a recent patch. Many players were disappointed they didn’t also fix the Perfect Guard.

Add Multiplayer…At Least PvE Co-op

In recognition that the bosses are sometimes ridiculously challenging, Lies of P has an NPC Specter that can be summoned to help. For those Souls or Elden Ring players who rely — or just enjoy — other humans’ assistance with bosses, adding this feature would be fantastic. The Specter does a good job of distracting the boss so the player can heal or repair their weapon. Beyond that, the Specter isn’t terribly strategic. There are systems for keeping the Specter alive longer, make them stronger or to bring them back from near death, which is great. A human cooperator, however, would make the boss fights even better. And, less frustrating.

Lies P’s weapons are so interesting that some sort of PvP arena would be fun, too. I don’t think the game needs invasions or the ability to co-op through the whole experience. It’s very linear and story focused.

Fix the Learning Curve

Early on, the gulf between normal enemies, elite enemies and bosses is pretty wide. FromSoftware’s games do an excellent job of using enemies to teach the player skills they’ll need against bosses. This is true with Lies of P also, but for many players, those brain dead enemies just waiting to be killed don’t prepare them for more challenging elites and bosses. This is something that can’t readily be patched but it could be addressed in a sequel.

Explain the P Organ System Better

Lies of P’s P Organ system is the way in which a player upgrades Pinocchio’s number of healing items, amulet slots and move set. It’s extremely important but not well explained and it’s very easy to invest quartz — the P Organ’s currency — in the wrong stats. Yes, you can re-spec (eventually), but investing those rather rare quartz with more understanding would definitely help the early game. Luckily, there’s more than enough information out there now to help new players. Also, most of the info is in the game…but lots of players don’t bother to read it.

Fix the Two-Phase Bosses

Many — maybe all — of Lies of P’s chapter ending bosses have two phases. That’s not unusual, of course. However, there are a number of recent RPGs that, when a player dies, skip them directly to the second phase. Even Elden Ring uses this mechanic in a few places. With Lies of P, once the key to phase one is strategically unlocked, it can feel like a waste of time to repeat it over and over, using valuable resources in the process. Either balance the two phases to make them different but equally difficult, or allow the player to jump directly to phase two on subsequent, post-death attempts. Both would be welcome.

Have you been enjoying Lies of P? What would you change to make it even more fun?

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