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Overview

Malicious, developed and published by Alvion, is a boss-focused action game for PlayStation 3, released via PlayStation Network. The game features cel-shaded graphics and lets players choose the protagonist's gender, but nothing else. An enhanced port, Malicious Rebirth, is in development for the PlayStation Vita.

Gameplay

The player is summoned by five wisemen to become the "Slayer", an entity capable of defeating the Malicious, an evil force. Your physical form is a robot called the Spirit Vessel, and your weapon is the Mantle of Cinders, which can not only change it is form to different weapons, but also lets you block incoming attacks with it. There is no health bar, as your character is a disembodied spirit that cannot die. Instead, as you take damage, parts of the Spirit Vessel will be destroyed. However, there is no blood or graphic violence, as the Spirit Vessal has no blood; the body parts just disappear, telling the player their health got depleted.

To be able to stand a chance against the Malicious, the player must defeat the former Slayers - all five of them - who refused to give back their powers and turned against their summoners. Upon defeat of the bosses, the battles ahead will become more difficult. Every boss stage is instantly available, but you need certain powers to efficiently beat them. That makes the decision which foe to face first a tactical choice, as you gain new powers with every boss defeat. You start out with the abilities to turn your cloak into fists and use bullets, but as the story progresses, new skills are added like a spear, additional jump height, wings, etc.

With normal attacks, the boss of each stage takes only little damage. The key to success is using Aura attacks, which are stronger, but need Aura points to be executed. The player earns Aura points by defeating the smaller enemies around the boss. These are not a real threat when you stay in motion, but respawn constantly and supply an endless amount of aura. The maximum Aura points a player can posses at one time is 9999.

Every fight has a time limit of half an hour, as the Spirit Vessel can only contain the Slayer for thirty minutes. If the battle exceeds that time limit, the Spirit Vessel dissolves, and the player automatically loses the fight.

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