No Rest for the Wicked – PC Preview

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No Rest for the Wicked is a new Action RPG, Souls-like crossover. It is in development by Moon Studios (Ori and the Blind Forest, Ori and the Will of the Wisps) with publishing by Private Division (Kerbal Space Program, The Outer Worlds). It became available in Early Access in mid-April on Steam. The full release version will be available for PC, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S.

It has the Souls-like tag for a reason!

Moon Studios is already known for visually stunning and atmospheric games. Though I personally have never played either Ori game, it is on my ever-growing list of games to play when given the chance. No Rest for the Wicked appears to be just as eye-catching and immersive as the Ori series. Do previous games from the same developer ever draw you to a new IP? For me it was Bungie that drew me from Halo into a long-standing love with the Destiny games. Check out the early access preview below and let me help you decide if you’ll follow suit!

The player character stands in the bottom right corner atop a lookout overlooking a town-esque scene. There are clay-tile roofed stone buildings with wooden and stone pathways between and connecting them.
There are random overlook points that are just so beautiful that you have to stop and take a look.


Coming in hot from Moon Studios, well known for their 2d platformer games Ori and the Blind Forest and Ori and the Will of the Wisps, is No Rest for the Wicked. This time they are shooting for a breath of fresh air into the Action RPG and Souls-like genres. You play as a warrior known as a Cerim, blessed with holy power and tasked to an island where an unholy plague called the Pestilence is taking over the land. But fighting the Pestilence is also said to intertwine with fate of the people that reside here as well. You’ll pick up challenges and bounties along the way in addition to the main storyline quests.

I will just be honest here: I am absolutely terrible at Souls-like games. I have yet to play any of the Dark Souls games and have only dabbled in Elden RingNo Rest for the Wicked was quick to remind me of this. The combat is just outright brutal for someone like me that does not currently possess the necessary skill to proceed through the game. I have rarely been able to manage getting in any parry and counter moves simply because my timing isn’t what it used to be 20 years ago. The game also takes the weight of your gear into consideration and classifies you into one of three weight classes, which affects how you dodge. My biggest mistake was probably thinking that I could carry around a huge claymore and not end up “fat rolling”.

True to form, No Rest for the Wicked also follows the path of putting points into different attributes as you level up. These attributes include the common factors of health, stamina, dexterity, and a few others one would expect. Choosing which attributes to upgrade that compliment the build you are going for is very important, as I’m not sure there is a way to reset them at some point or not. Thankfully as you go to put points in the pending changes to how it will affect your build can be easily seen.

No Rest for the Wicked is different from many Souls-like games with its stylish ARPG view of the world. The mostly top-down view creates a bit more of a challenge in my opinion. I often run into enemies simply because I am running through an area and not able to see that they are there ahead of time. Climbing ladders upward is also just as treacherous. I will say that the game is very much meant to play with your favorite controller so movement into my death was solid and never really felt clunky. Apart from my own choice to play heavy that is.

A snapshot of one of the early storyline cutscenes. I green-robed male figure with graying narrow beard and black curly hair holds out a rapier threateningly. Several armored guards appear in the background holding spears.
The in-game cutscenes are full of detail, just like the game.

Graphics & Audio

For an early access game, No Rest for the Wicked is looking and sounding great. The environment and character models are full of detail and provide a truly dreary aesthetic. I can’t imagine how Moon Studios came up with such gruesome creatures to infest the island but I hope to never see any of them for myself.

The voice acting in No Rest for the Wicked is also top notch. I was great to hear characters that actually sound like the character rather than someone reading off a script. Even with the limit of my ability to progress very far into the story I can still see how impressive the variety between NPC voices is. You’re lucky to have any voice acting in a lot of games that hit Early Access. At least from other indie studios.

Player character at center of screen with health UI at top left, consumables and skills at bottom left, and health bar for the boss along the bottom. The grotesque form of the first boss, Warrick the Torn, is in the top center area of the screen. The player and boss are fighting in a dirt pathway.
This guy took me way too long to get past…


Someday after some hard work I’ll progress further along the story in No Rest for the Wicked. My understanding is that there is already quite a bit of content available as it is right now. Unfortunately, it is here in the huge ocean of gaming we have this year. There was a brief splash like Palworld and Enshrouded but not much since. Hopefully though with some refinement and additional content down the road, their 1.0 release will shape up to be something unique and memorable. The game already feels like it will be worth at least a few playthroughs.

Final Thoughts

I can see where No Rest for the Wicked is trying to go with redefining the Souls-like and ARPG genres. It is really integrating a lot of different systems and features that come from combining the two. And once again Moon Studios gives us something to admire and truly lose yourself in. Hopefully most of the growing pains will be overcome with community feedback. I’m sure the game will become popular once more with the addition of 4-player co-op in their first major update. I’d definitely recommend keeping an eye on it, even if you plan on waiting until it is out on console.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out my other reviews here.

Disclaimer: A code was received to write this preview.

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