Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth has got to have one of the most confusing names in recent gaming history.
We had to sit and type it out carefully to make sure there wasn’t an error. And what does any of it mean!? Oh… yeah, we played the game to find out.
Well, the good news is the game is great. It’s a Metroidvania steeped in the mystique of the original PlayStation’s Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (1997). That is good news indeed and we’re here to celebrate it.
Embrace 1997’s Symphonies in Record of Lodoss War
Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth is from tiny indie studio Team Ladybug, based out in Japan. It launched in late 2021 in Nippon, early 2022 for the rest of the world.
You can get it on anything. Steam, PS, Xbox, Switch. And it’s a heady blend of action role-playing meets platforming and adventuring.
In other words, it’s a Metroidvania. You know the drill by now.
But if you know of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, you’ll also know it remains one of the PlayStations’ most celebrated games. Rightly so! And Record of Lodoss is a glowing homage to the whole thing.
However, and unusually, the classic shoot ’em up Ikaruga was also an influence. That’s with Lodoss’ colour shifting palette and other graphical flourishes.
What Team Ladybug did here is make this thing look exactly like a ’97 era PlayStation game. And it really does look like a new addition to the Castlevania series. Behold!
Plot wise, the game is part of the Record of Lodoss War manga series by Japanese author and game designer Ryo Mizuno.
As the player, you take control of the elf Deedlit (that game title is starting to make sense now!) and you must journey through a mysterious labyrinth packed out with ghostly foes and passed away friends.
Classic Castlevania type action unfolds.
As you’d expect, the game plays similarly to the series it’s so heavily entrenched in. Especially Symphony of the Night.
And we found the map you need to explore, weapons, combat, and soundtrack all rather satisfying indeed! It really grabs you early on and doesn’t let up until the end. Top entertainment value.
And a must for anyone who loves Castlevania games.
The controls are intuitive and you feel compelled to keep on exploring. And the game doesn’t overcomplicate things—the story is simplistic, there are no major surprises, but it does just deliver on its Symphony of the Night homage so well.
It’s not a long game, though, offering around six hours of exploration.
Yet there’s a lot crammed into that time, with the attention to detail across the game impressive. We just love the retro styling! As well as the commitment to make a ’90s era styled PlayStation soundtrack. Banging tunes!
Conclusions!? Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth is a great game. It’s not a classic—more on the 8/10 level (which is what most of the gaming press handed it).
That extra special something is just missing.
But for what it is, as a lovingly crafted indie project, you get a short but crunchy retro homage to the late ’90s. And we like that a lot.