In Verbis Virtus

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a game by Indomitus Games
Platform: PC
Editor Rating: 8/10, based on 1 review
User Rating: 9.0/10 - 2 votes
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See also: Best Indie Games, Magic Games
In Verbis Virtus
In Verbis Virtus
In Verbis Virtus
In Verbis Virtus

Designing a game that centers around a singular mechanic or gimmick can be a risk, but a puzzle game is the most apt genre to make that principle work—and, In Verbis Virtus, is a stellar example. Taking place in a fantasy realm and two levels of a mysterious magical temple, this game offers its own twist on the puzzle genre by implementing voice-activated magic spells.

That means, as you move around in the first-person environments ranging from dark caverns, long-abandoned tombs, to scenic dungeons—you have to be wary in solving puzzles to say the right spell at the right time, else the consequences can range from minor to catastrophic in the later game.

Lore by Design

Inspired by games like Mist or Portal, In Verbis Virtus takes players on an amazing, mind-bending adventure. With a silent protagonist, it does a great job of expanding on the lore of the world through new spells, notes, and journal entries all centered around weaving a complex narrative driven by a singular force. It also succeeds in making the lore of the world a necessary addition to gameplay and forward momentum, as neglecting to explore the areas can limit player interest over time, objective resolution, and even some knowledge necessary for more complex solves.

Moving through levels of the secret temple, battling swarms of small-fodder enemies and even confronting bosses—the game takes a lot of unexpected twists not always common in the puzzle genre. And, while the campaign and puzzles can vary greatly in difficulty, the voice-activated spells make for a truly immersive system of solving and even, combat.

A New Way to Solve

As mentioned, the best part of this game is also it’s primary focus, voice-activated spells. The spell list of this game is long, expansive, and where some other games fail in this regard—In Verbis Virtus does a great job of ensuring early-game spells are still necessary in later-game. That being said, spells spoken in the original language of the game, Maha’ki, vary in complexity and use.

There are simple light spells like ‘Lumeh Tial’ (Light, I invoke) or healing spells like ‘Yeggah Mideh’ (Healing waters)—and also more complicated spells like telekinesis that are different depending on the direction of movement: ‘Obee Kehnu’ (Object Movement) with specifications like ‘Ekto Namet’ (Distant to Myself) or ‘Opun Obee’ (Cease Movement) make for a lot of complexity. All these spells come to be second nature as the game moves on, though reminders are needed here and there.

Just the Beginning

Like a technical demo, In Verbis Virtus feels like a great innovation to the medium that could be expanded upon even further. While it isn’t a completely original idea—I still have memories that I try to stifle of playing Skyrim on Kinect and having to yell ‘Fus Ro Dah’ over and over again until it registered while my roommate continued to halt my game entirely by instead yelling ‘Kinect, quicksave!’—it still implements the idea far better than previous iterations.

8

Of course, there are some hiccups in framerate very reminiscent of Lichdom: Battlemage (no matter how high-end the PC is that runs it), and sometimes it feels like the spell doesn’t register your voice—however, those gripes are few and far between. Overall, this game offers a compelling world, story, and a truly immersive gameplay mechanic worth trying out at least once.

Pros

  • Amazing fantasy aesthetic
  • Lore is complex and intertwined
  • Voice-activated spells truly immersive
  • Exciting, challenging puzzles

Cons

  • Limited enemy variants
  • Some voice-activation issues

Download In Verbis Virtus

PC

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

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