The Procession To Calvary: 9 Things You Should Know Before Playing
Created by Joe Richardson, The Procession To Calvary is a must-play for anyone who enjoys the beauty and oddness of Renaissance artwork as well as the obscurity of Monty Python humor. Released in 2020, the Indie game is a great point-and-click adventure, which is currently available to play at no extra cost for those who own the Xbox PC Game Pass.
Playing as a murderous iteration of Rembrandt's Bellona, you are tasked by your leader, Immortal John, to find and kill Heavenly Peter, the escaped enemy. Explore the landscapes of famous paintings and meet iconic figures of artwork as you solve puzzles and get closer to carrying out your duty. Here's what you need to know before you start playing.
9 It Is The Second Instalment In The Immortal John Triptych Trilogy
Although easily played as a standalone game, it is important to note that The Procession To Calvary is actually the second installment in Joe Richardson's soon-to-be-completed Immortal John Triptych game trilogy. The first game, Four Last Things, follows the actions of Immortal John and what led him to revolt against Heavenly Peter.
It's not a requirement to complete the first game before The Procession To Calvary, as it is simply a 'spiritual successor' rather than a consecutive sequel. However, it is just as enjoyable and there are some great references to the first game in the second that are great to spot for those with a keen eye.
8 It Has Pythonesque Humor
The humor of the game truly makes it an enjoyable experience, with moments of confusion, hilarity, and complete absurdity. Described by developer Joe Richardson on its Steam page as having "a style of humor reminiscent of the surreal, anarchic comedy of Monty Python", when playing the game, it is clear to see the inspiration taken from the British satirical comedy troupe.
From using a torture wheel to fix a wagon (with a man still attached) to making a Metrognome keep a faster beat, this game will have you wondering in awe at the obscure and scoffing at the downright silly. The game also has some great moments of meta-humor, introducing a fun element of introspective comedy.
7 It Has A Great Soundtrack
Although at first, most aesthetics come from the visual aspect of the game with the animated Renaissance artworks taking precedence for most players, the soundtrack itself is just as great as the visuals. With musical pieces that fit the style of the game, it can be easy to simply stop playing and enjoy the music.
Classical pieces from composers such as Bach, Vivaldi, and Handel will accompany you on your journey, creating a soundtrack fitting the art style utilized by Joe Richardson. Different pieces of music accompany different areas of travel, making the journey you experience through Rembrandt's Bellona all the more realistic.
6 Puzzle-Solving Is A Key Element
Although the aesthetics of The Road To Calvary are almost pleasing enough on their own, there is a puzzle-solving aspect to the game which can, at times, be quite challenging. As you journey to the south to find and kill Heavenly Peter, there are multiple obstacles along the way that you must overcome to complete your mission.
Speaking to as many people as you can is one of the best ways to solve the puzzles that the game presents you with, and it is important to keep in mind that there is usually a right way to do things. A lot of the solutions can be quite complex, meaning that exploring every instance that you can, will work in your favor.
5 Exploring Your Surroundings Is A Must
Just as speaking to everyone is important, so is exploring every scene carefully. Quite often, the item that you will need down the line will either be hidden subtly in a scene or sitting tauntingly in plain view, only for you to realize its usefulness later on.
Exploring your surroundings in scenes and familiarising yourself with places you may not even need yet will help you in the long run as, as soon as you get a new puzzle, you'll be able to think of a possible solution. It is important to remember, however, that the game is weird, meaning that the solution will likely be the same. Put yourself in the shoes of an odd character in this setting and see what solutions you can come up with to solve your problems.
4 Understand The Mechanics
As a point-and-click game, it is easy to assume that there are limited mechanics available to use, however, this is not the case. When interacting with something or someone, you have to option to inspect, physically interact with or talk to/about the object of your focus. There is also the added mechanic of using a sword, either for cutting objects or, most importantly, killing people.
You also have access to an inventory, where you can store items you've collected along the way and use them to solve certain situations. The most useful mechanic of all, however, is the ability to see every item you are able to interact with in a location, often helping when the solution to a puzzle is not clear.
3 To Kill, Or Not To Kill, That Is The Question
Although at the beginning of the game Immortal John orders you to kill Heavenly Peter (and only Heavenly Peter), whether or not you follow this advice is completely your choice. Although it may seem easier to simply kill anyone who gets in your way rather than solve puzzles, there are consequences to taking this route.
As people aren't so keen to help murderers, you'll often find that this gets in the way of the gameplay, with some options that would have been open now closed off. If you do choose to kill someone who isn't Heavenly Peter, a bolt of lightning from the heavens will strike you, reminding you of your oath to Immortal John.
2 There Are Multiple Endings
Depending on what type of playthrough you decide to take (murderous or loyal to your mission), there are three different, equally fun ways that the game can end. Two depend on you not killing anyone other than Heavenly Peter and the other allows you to murder anyone who stands in your way
The first ending is achieved by not murdering anyone and then turning down Heavenly Peter's offer of riches, killing him instead. The second ending follows the same requirement as the first, with the difference of accepting the bribe. The third ending, however, counts on you killing someone (or everyone) who wasn't Heavenly Peter.
1 Playtime And Replayability Are Limited
Although The Procession To Calvary is a fun, enjoyable game, the length of it is relatively short, with most playthroughs taking between two to four hours. Although this would usually mean that replayability is increased due to the shorter time it takes to play the game, this isn't really the case.
Many players of the game recommend utilizing the manual save and load feature to get the achievements from multiple endings, rather than playing through the entire game from the start. Replayability, therefore, is quite limited, however, not impossible for those who enjoy the humor and style of The Procession To Calvary.
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