Ultra-Indie Spotlight Sunday: Wrought Flesh
In an impossibly far-off future, a space capsule lands on a planet. From it the player character emerges. You are a Gajeshian Cultist, a sacred being on a sacred journey, who just happens to be a fully nude cadaver with gigantic flowing hair. With jaguar running speed enhanced by stolen lungs and incredible firepower enhanced by a drug called “killfuck,” you race out into the desert to kill and loot on your way to finish your divine quest. The game that holds this insanity is called Wrought Flesh.
A normal feeling game just doesn’t cut it for me anymore. I want something absolutely nuts and not even slightly resembling reality. Games grounded in realism are cool, but not nearly as interesting as playing Wrought Flesh. I need an experience that makes me feel like I have an extremely high fever.
Wrought Flesh feels as if Cruelty Squad took place in the Dune universe. Everything looks rough at best and incomprehensible at worst. The environments are massive and mostly empty, and the people within look ridiculous. The townsfolk will reward you for completing quests by unlocking the freestanding refrigerators and giving you the organs within, and the enemies you fight run and jump around as fast as you do. It’s all so delightful.
Non-Wanky Game Recap:
Wrought Flesh plays more or less like a regular shooter. But rather than inventory management for your guns, you sort through guts. Your character is built from the bodies of long-dead saints, but that isn’t enough. You also need to get out and cram the organs of recently dead bandits in order to keep ongoing. Add lungs to increase speed, and fat for more health. Give yourself some intestines to eat corpses on the go. And should you find yourself with an exotic animal’s organ with acid flowing through it, that just gives your default finger gun a bit of elemental fun.
What works with Wrought Flesh is that it’s cuckoo bananas. Everything is weird and uncomfortable, visually and in the content. The cadavers you loot are completely grotesque, and the lore of this world is, again, as bleak as Dune. But I say this not because I dislike it. Indeed, good art is supposed to evoke some kind of feeling, even discomfort, and disgust. The world of Wrought Flesh is nothing short of fascinating, and the fun gameplay makes it an incredible experience.
The biggest problem with Wrought Flesh is the price. As it stands, the game can be beaten in about an hour or two if you’re good. While I think that the experience is well worth $20, I can imagine others would want more bang for their buck. On top of that, the directions you’re given are somewhat opaque. There’s no map to follow, and the objectives you’re given can be pretty vague. In a big open world, especially one where you need to find certain small objects to interact with in order to progress, some specific instructions are nice.
How To Fix It:
I assume that there is more content on the way. Even a little over two weeks out from release, Wrought Flesh has had a bit of a content update adding more organs and a horde mode. The premise that this game has is special. The dev would be remiss to not expand on this idea. As for the directions, I’m not saying that there should be a Skyrim style minimap. Some better organizing and descriptions in the journal would make the process of hunting down little items a bit easier.
Judging by the previous games of developer Miziziziz/Narayana Walters, Wrought Flesh is their most ambitious project yet. It’s a great risk to create something that is intentionally a little off-putting, but as Cruelty Squad has demonstrated, players love weird stuff a lot. Wrought Flesh is an incredible start on a game that has tremendous potential, and after playing through the content that’s available now, I can’t wait for more.
You can buy Wrought Flesh on Steam by clicking here.