A Plague Tale: Requiem – “The ‘Rat King’ Kid and His Sister Again in the Bloody Turmoil of the Middle Ages [PS Plus]”

REVIEW – The year is 1348. Six months have passed since the Inquisition was broken, and our heroes, Amicia and Hugo de Rune, can finally enjoy their well-deserved childhood. The rats that threatened them in A Plague Tale: Innocence are gone, everything seems normal and pleasant. But everything soon turns wrong, sending them on another desperate journey through the world of A Plague Tale: Requiem. The game starts in January 2024 with PS Plus, so we took a close look at the second part of Asabo’s stealth, tactical horror-spiced, medieval action-adventure franchise from 2022.



The game starts with a tutorial on sneaking, presented in the form of a game of hide-and-seek with our alchemist friend, Lucas. It seems Hugo has overcome the blood disease he got in the first game and has enjoyed a few peaceful months as a normal kid.



The Bond of Siblings: Stronger Than Anything


Although ten years apart, the bond between Amicia and her five-year-old brother Hugo is so strong, it’s almost tangible. Their love for each other, and for their friend Lucas, is immediately visible and unshakable, and this remains throughout the game. Even if you haven’t played the first part, you will instantly bond with the protagonists.

This game is not just an innocent game of hide-and-seek with the younger sibling. Their playful mood quickly takes a dangerous turn when they come into the crosshairs of an angry farmer and his threatening axe. One misunderstanding leads to another, and Amicia is again forced to take lives to protect herself and her brother. The stress is too much for Hugo, his illness – and the chaos that comes with it, namely a lot of rats – reappears.

Then begins a magical and touching journey for the siblings, as Hugo’s dreams lead them to an island that promises a cure for the boy’s illness and his sister’s troubles too. For Hugo, this adventure is a physical journey around the world in search of the cure he constantly dreams of. For Amicia, this journey is also a mental challenge, as she often has to extinguish lives, and has to reconcile this heavy burden with the inner struggles and PTSD lurking in her soul.



The Army of Rats Returns


The scurrying little demons from the first game are back, destroying cities and devouring their inhabitants alive. Meanwhile, Amicia, Hugo, and Lucas must avoid being devoured alive while stealthily avoiding the countless enemies who are unwilling to forgive their trespasses.

Mechanically, this is very similar to the first game. Sneak if you can, but kill if you must. The little demons hate the light, but the light reveals your position to the enemy, resulting in an excellent game of rat and mouse. Whether you’re a cat in this worn-out analogy depends on your playing style.

Armed with a sling, Amicia can either take down human enemies David-and-Goliath style or send a swarm of rats their way by plunging them into darkness, removing their only defense against the looming doom at their feet. She also has a new crossbow that expands her options. Each kill affects the characters, commenting on your choices while doing everything they can to justify why they must do what they need to do.

Since we are in the 14th century, all light comes from either sunlight or flames. Flames can be extinguished or reignited using alchemist ammunition – Ignifer to light fires, Extinguis to extinguish them. These can be combined with a sling, a pot (as a grenade-style weapon), or a crossbow bolt through a quick crafting menu, opening up a multitude of solutions for the world ahead.



Don’t Overstrain Your Brain


Of course, not everything is stealth combat; the puzzles from the first game return, although they are at best simple. Despite their simplicity, the team at Asobo and Focus Entertainment has created a stunning game that is challenging and captivating. Atmospherically brilliant; graphically stunning (although zooming in on the cardboard-like birds in photo mode is very entertaining); and narratively, the game is a masterpiece. I’ve really come to love the de Rune family and am happy to help them get the rest they so clearly need and deserve.

The photo mode is both a blessing and a curse. It’s great fun examining the world around you, but it quickly becomes apparent that it is very, very exploitable. For the first part of the game, you don’t yet have the ability to detect nearby enemies, but you do have the unintentional power of Photo Mode. Often, when I wanted to count the soldiers or find a puzzle solution, I would pause the game, switch to photo mode

Many times, when I wanted to count soldiers or find a solution to a puzzle, I would pause the game, switch to photo mode, and ‘God-mode’ my way through the room, as you can pass through walls and floors and go quite far from Amicia in the process. This completely flattens the tension, but it’s too useful not to exploit.



Breathtaking Visuals and DualSense Support


“A Plague Tale: Requiem” on the PlayStation 5 offers a truly breathtaking graphic experience. The game runs at 1440p resolution on both the PS5 and Xbox Series X, ensuring outstanding image quality on both platforms. The details rendered in the game and the atmosphere of medieval France come to life impressively, offering a real treat for the players.

The special features of the PS5, like DualSense support, further enhance the gaming experience. The adaptive triggers and haptic feedback of the DualSense controller allow for a deeper immersion into the game’s world. However, it’s worth noting that the PS5 version of the game may experience some performance issues, especially in larger open areas with many rats present. Nevertheless, due to the game’s slower pace, the graphics remain stunning and enjoyable.

While the game is technologically impressive, the developers do not offer a 60fps performance mode, only targeting 30fps, although they do support a discrete 40fps mode on 120Hz displays. This decision may disappoint some players, especially those accustomed to higher frame rates. However, the game’s graphical and technological aspects truly represent the next generation, especially in terms of the “rat technology,” which is groundbreaking.



An Unmissable Medieval Adventure Again


The atmosphere of “A Plague Tale: Requiem,” like the first part, once again completely captivated me. The graphics, sound design, and storytelling are phenomenal, and the gameplay is fantastic. There are some issues, like the stealth sections feeling monotonous and the puzzles being a bit too easy, but these are forgivable given how excellent Amicia and Hugo’s characters are. If you liked the first game or are just looking for something narratively gripping, Requiem is the game for you, and it couldn’t be a better start for PS Plus in January 2024 after a disappointing 2023.

-Gergely Herpai (BadSector)-


+ Excellent writing, graphics and sound design
+ The characters are nuanced and likeable, with a strong female protagonist
+ Reliable stealth and combat


– Stealth parts can be a bit repetitive
– Puzzles are still a bit easy
– Linear, cramped environment, limiting the player’s room for movement​​

Publisher: Focus Entertainment

Developer: Asobo Studio

Style: Action-adventure

Release: October 17, 2022.

A Plague Tale: Requiem

Gameplay - 8.2
Graphics - 8.8
Story - 8.9
Music/Audio - 8.3
Ambience - 8.6



"A Plague Tale: Requiem" offers an immersive audio-visual enchantment and an unforgettable story in which the characters deeply touch the players' hearts. Some parts of the gameplay, such as stealth and puzzles, may feel monotonous at times, but the game as a whole provides an exciting, emotionally rich adventure. The unfolding of Amicia and Hugo's fate, along with the strikingly lifelike depiction of medieval France, leaves a profound impression on the players.

User Rating: 4.36 ( 2 votes)

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BadSector is a seasoned journalist for more than twenty years. He communicates in English, Hungarian and French. He worked for several gaming magazines - including the Hungarian GameStar, where he worked 8 years as editor. (For our office address, email and phone number check out our impressum)

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