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Little Noah: Scion of Paradise

by Mike Burgess - October 20, 2022, 12:14 am EDT
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A fun, approachable, and beatable rogue-lite.

As much as I really do enjoy rogue-lite games, there are always so many releasing or in early access that it’s hard to keep up with any one of them. I always start one and end up putting it down for other games, and then usually return with little idea of what I was doing or feel overwhelmed by the number of currencies or systems I need to engage with. So I was pleasantly surprised when I hopped into Little Noah: Scion of Paradise with its simple approach to gameplay systems and its unique combat that kept me engaged and wanting to keep playing till the end.

You're thrown right into the fray as Noah Little. She is an up-and-coming alchemist looking for her father and has crash-landed her airship in these mysterious ruins floating in the sky. Early on, you meet a talking cat who has lost his memory and is being attacked by monsters; after saving him, he reluctantly joins you on your quest and acts as the main thrust of the story by trying to reclaim his memories and solve what exactly is going on in these ruins and why these monsters are here. Frankly, this story didn't really grab me, and it ultimately devolves into a somewhat typical good vs evil narrative that was serviceable enough just to get to the gameplay.

With all these monsters running amok, it's a good thing that Noah the alchemist can turn them into familiars to combat them on her journey: this is where Scion of Paradise really shines. As you start a run, you’re given three familiars that act as your weapon or your attacks. These familiars can be any kind of creature, like an ogre with a club, or a tiny green dragon, to chibi-style anime characters like a red-haired lady with a mace or a ninja who launches wind blades across the battlefield. Each of these little guys will be put into a line or a string of attacks you unleash with the attack button. So if you have the ogre first in line, it’ll do a large swipe with its club; if the ninja was next in line their attack would be next, and the familiar after would continue the attack. The more characters you have, the bigger string of attacks you can do for a maximum of five hits.

Some familiars don't have traditional attacks; for instance, there’s a tiny robot familiar that will shoot icicles out of in every direction from its body, and another familiar might appear in the air and strike from above, so the order in which you have these attacks can really make a difference. Fortunately, you can change the order of your familiars’ attacks in the menu at any time during your runs. On top of the five-hit combo, you can also slot any of your familiars into a special skill slot which will potentially give them a more powerful version of their basic attack or a completely new move, depending on the familiar. The red-haired lady with a mace does a powerful overhead swing as her normal attack but her special skill does multiple overhand swings and launches lava rocks with each swing, making for a much more devastating attack. A cooldown period does mean you can’t keep using the special skills constantly, though.

The familiars you collect have star rarities attached to them ranging from one to three stars, with three stars representing the best and most powerful familiars you can have on your team. On a similar rarity scale is the equipment that you can acquire on your run, which mostly give you passive buffs. While some aspects feel inspired by mobile games, there are no actual microtransactions or gacha systems you would see in that genre. I think this is just because Little Noah is developed by Cygames, a prominent mobile game developer known for Granblue & Dragalia Lost.

Being a rogue-lite, there are plenty of systems to upgrade items and abilities. You can collect incense that you can give to your familiars to boost their stats. Other than that, however, there is only a single currency that ties to all your other unlocks and upgrades. This is the mana that you acquire at the end of each run, pass or fail. All the items you acquired on that run are just converted into this currency used to purchase either more equipment items you can find on runs. New familiars are also unlocked with mana and this is also how you permanently increase stats like health and various damage resists and attack damage. I really loved how simple this all was, letting me focus on the combat and doing runs rather than trying to farm currencies or various resources like I’d be doing in other rogue-lites.

I wrapped up Little Noah: Scion of Paradise in around ten hours. It was just such a refreshing feeling to finish up with a game in this style in a short period. I really appreciated the simple gameplay loop of going on a run, finding cool familiars, and figuring out the best order to put them in. I didn't feel bogged down by the systems cause I knew no matter how good or bad a specific run went, I’d still be coming out of one with some currency to work on the next upgrade I wanted. I would have liked some optional modes now that I’m finished with Little Noah, like a daily challenge mode or something, but I still had a fun time and recommend it to anyone curious.


  • Simple but fun gameplay
  • Unique combat
  • No optional or extra modes
  • Somewhat forgettable story

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Game Profile

Genre RPG
Developer Cygames

Worldwide Releases

na: Little Noah: Scion of Paradise
Release Jun 28, 2022
RatingEveryone 10+
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