Australia's latest video game studio has hit the ground running with their debut game Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical.
Stray Gods casts the player as Grace, a musician and drop-out who finds herself thrust into a world of gods and intrigue after being gifted with musical powers and accused of murder.
What follows is a classic who-dun-it, as Grace attempts to clear her name.
Over the course of one in-game week, the investigation takes the form of simply selecting who to interrogate and the approach you want to take.
There are three traits to choose from: 'charming,' 'kickass,' and 'intelligent, which provide a rough framework, although the game never forces you to commit to just one approach.
Major choices are generally what you'd expect from a role-playing game, with several romantic interests to choose from (or not choose, of course) and several major choices to make however while the approach will vary between players, the bulk of the story plays out in largely the same way.
But this is a musical, after all, and players will often be asked to decide on a strategy mid-song, with just a few bars of thinking time providing no small degree of time pressure and an incentive to 'go with your gut' - for better or worse outcomes.
As the cast goes, Laura Bailey puts in a stunning performance as Grace while Troy Baker 'shines' as sun god Apollo and Mary Elizabeth McGlynn commands every scene she's in as Persephone.
The highlight, however, is Khary Payton as the irrepressible trickster god Pan - with smooth, deep vocals perfectly exuding the confidence of somebody who knows more than you, but isn't sharing.
Of course, this is all incidental to the real star of the show - the music.
The songwriting prowess of Montaigne, Tripod and Austin Wintory is on full display in each variation and permutation and Stray Gods provides plenty to keep you moving and grooving through the story.
The variety is worth commending as well, ranging from fast-paced rock battles to slow, soulful ballads - although country and western fans may feel a little scorned, just about every other genre you could name gets a chance in the spotlight.
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Unfortunately, the game's lack of a 'replay chapter' option is keenly felt, although the number of possible variations makes it an understandable omission.
It does become somewhat galling however when a song gets stuck in your head, and you can't listen to it without another four hours of gameplay.
Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical takes the stage with confidence and easily blows the roof off this joint, and with the replayability that the winding paths provide, you'll surely hit 'new game' for an encore.
Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical game is available now on PC and all major consoles.
- Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical was reviewed on a PlayStation 5 console, with a code provided by the publisher.