PS4 Review: Bound by Flame

Bound by budget?

Bound by Flame is your typical action RPG, it has a clichéd but interesting story, good ideas and plenty of potential, but is the leap to next gen too much for this small team?
“From their castles of ice, the lord-sorcerers of Shadowcold now reign as masters on the continent and crush mercilessly the remnant resistance, of which you belong. When all hope appears to be lost, a demon of flames chooses you as its host…” is the summary of the story, which opens up plenty of possibilities, and the choices you make can really impact the game where even party members will end up leaving you if you are too merciless. If you can get past the substandard voice work, there’s a nice story to be found here.

Combat is an interesting mix as you can switch classes mid-combat, which opens things up a lot as long as you spend your skill points wisely, I’d recommend balancing them between 2 of the classes instead of all 3 as you won’t be nearly as strong otherwise. Button mashing is a no-no when it comes to this game, think of it like Dark Souls in the way it handles, even on the easiest difficulty you will find yourself struggling against some of the enemies and each battle has to be carefully planned or you could wind up dead easily.
When playing through the game, it’s clear it’s not optimized for PS4 but looks like a very average PS3 game, the character models look decent and the animation isn’t too shabby…but the areas look very generic and there’s next to no free roaming exploring to be found. It’s rough around the edges, but if you look past that there’s definitely potential to be found. Hopefully this isn’t the last we’ve seen of this series; maybe one day we’ll see a sequel. I hope so anyway…

The Verdict
Bound by Flame has its share of issues, it’s clearly a low-budget game and it wasn’t optimized for next-gen but regardless of what version you play, there are some good ideas and although they don’t always pan out that well, what does work works well. It’s rough around the edges, but if you can get past that you’ll find an enjoyable, albeit brief action RPG.