I've played through Stories: The Paths of Destiny a dozen times over the past few days, and I won't stop until I've explored every narrative branch of this choose your own action-adventure. The power of choice compels me. Evan covered the basics in his review of Spearhead Games' colourful action role-playing game. My plan was to write about how compelling I find the tiny tales that comprise Stories. How upon unlocking one of the 24 storylines I felt obliged to dive right back in and discover what would have happened had Reynardo, the rogue fox, taken a different path on his journey to defeat the evil empire.
12 down, 12 to go.
That was the plan. Then I made the decision to launch the game via Steam (Evan played the PlayStation 4 version) to grab a screenshot or two. Now my story was a 20 minute video of me playing through the game in order to unlock another ending.
Doesn't it get boring, playing through the same game so many times? It helps that Stories is never quite the same game twice.
The story morphs depending on the decisions the player makes. New areas open up based on the swords the player has crafted, each unlocking corresponding doors littered across the game's playfields. Eventually chests begin yielding powerful gems, adding fresh modifiers to the combo-based combat system.
Twenty-six levels and a dozen endings later I am no longer discovering new areas. I've gotten all of the loot chests have to offer, upgraded all four swords to their max level.
My play throughs are now about speed and efficiency. Each new skill point earned makes the battles go a little bit faster, end a little bit flashier. My stamina upgrades allow me to dash through levels like a madman, ignoring already-discovered secrets. Minus loading times, I can make it through all five chapters of a story path in 20 minutes.
I'm still enjoying myself immensely, looking forward to discovering what each new day has in store. Last night, after finishing recording the video for this article, I played two more stories. One of them saw Reynardo get poisoned in an early chapter. He spent the rest of the game slowly losing health with each passing second.
What secrets lurk beneath these ten remaining story spaces? Rest assured I will find out.
Remember in the video where I said I'd play through two more times? Truth.