8 Soul-Stirring Games Like Ashen You Need to Play

games like ashen

Ashen has undoubtedly made a name for itself in the action RPG scene with its challenging combat, unique art style, and haunting world. It’s no surprise that many of us are craving more experiences like it, as the game has left a lasting impression on both seasoned players and newcomers to the genre.

Ashen is part of the ever-growing “Souls-like” genre, known for their dark atmospheres, methodical combat, and punishing difficulty. With so many titles out there, it can be tough to find the perfect game to scratch that Ashen itch.

I’ve put together a list of 8 soul-stirring games that share a lot in common with Ashen, and I’m confident you’ll find your next gaming obsession among them.

Hollow Knight

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Set in the eerie, underground world of Hallownest, this action-packed adventure game quickly gained a cult following, and for good reason. Like Ashen, Hollow Knight draws you in with its atmospheric world, mysterious lore, and tight, challenging gameplay.

At first glance, Hollow Knight’s hand-drawn art style might seem a stark contrast to Ashen’s minimalist aesthetic, but both games share a moody atmosphere that will keep you engaged for hours.

The gameplay is a fantastic blend of exploration, platforming, and combat, where you’ll face off against a plethora of creepy-crawly enemies and challenging bosses. And, much like Ashen, Hollow Knight isn’t afraid to test your skills with its demanding difficulty.

Another aspect that Hollow Knight shares with Ashen is the focus on discovery. As you venture deeper into the dark, interconnected world of Hallownest, you’ll uncover hidden secrets, upgrade your abilities, and piece together the intriguing story behind the kingdom’s fall.

If you’re a fan of Ashen’s exploration and challenging combat, Hollow Knight is an absolute must-play.

Salt and Sanctuary

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If you’re looking for a game that borrows heavily from the Souls-like formula while adding its own unique twist, look no further than Salt and Sanctuary. This 2D action RPG wears its inspiration on its sleeve, but its side-scrolling perspective and hand-drawn art style make it stand out from the crowd.

In Salt and Sanctuary, you’ll find yourself shipwrecked on a mysterious island, brimming with dangerous creatures and treacherous landscapes.

The gameplay shares many similarities with Ashen, including stamina-based combat, a vast array of weapons and armor, and a deep, interconnected world to explore.

And just like Ashen, you can expect to be challenged by the game’s punishing difficulty and ruthless boss encounters.

Despite its 2D side-scrolling format, Salt and Sanctuary is rich in RPG elements. As you progress through the game, you’ll gain access to a diverse skill tree, allowing you to customize your character to fit your playstyle.

This added layer of depth and customization makes Salt and Sanctuary not only a fantastic homage to the Souls-like genre but also a perfect game for those looking to dive back into an Ashen-esque experience.

Hyper Light Drifter

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Next up on our list is the stylish and enigmatic Hyper Light Drifter. This pixel art masterpiece blends retro aesthetics with modern design, creating an experience that’s both nostalgic and refreshing. While its visuals might differ from Ashen’s, Hyper Light Drifter shares many similarities in terms of exploration, combat, and difficulty.

The world of Hyper Light Drifter is shrouded in mystery, urging players to venture into its depths and uncover its secrets. As you traverse the game’s vibrant landscapes and ancient ruins, you’ll face off against a variety of challenging enemies and intense boss fights.

The combat, like Ashen’s, is fast-paced and rewarding, with tight controls that make every encounter feel satisfying and fair.

What sets Hyper Light Drifter apart from other games on this list is its emphasis on speed and agility. Your character, the Drifter, is equipped with a powerful dash ability that allows for quick, fluid movement through the game world.

This mechanic not only adds a unique twist to combat but also enhances the game’s exploration aspect. If you’re a fan of Ashen’s challenging gameplay and love a bit of pixel art nostalgia, Hyper Light Drifter is an excellent choice.


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Delving into the realm of procedurally generated dungeons, Necropolis offers a unique and ever-changing experience for fans of Ashen and the Souls-like genre. With its distinct, low-poly art style and a focus on replayability, Necropolis is the perfect game for those seeking a fresh challenge every time they play.

At its core, Necropolis shares many gameplay elements with Ashen, including stamina-based combat, a wide array of weapons, and an array of fearsome enemies.

However, the game ups the ante with its procedurally generated dungeons, ensuring that no two playthroughs are the same. This dynamic environment keeps players on their toes, forcing them to adapt and strategize as they descend deeper into the dungeon.

One notable feature of Necropolis is its permadeath system. Once your character falls in battle, they’re gone for good, and you’ll need to start over with a new character. While this may sound daunting, it adds an extra layer of tension and excitement to each playthrough.

The game also supports cooperative multiplayer, allowing you and your friends to band together and brave the depths of the Necropolis. If you’re a fan of Ashen’s difficulty and enjoy the thrill of roguelike games, Necropolis is definitely worth checking out.

The Surge

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Taking a step into the realm of sci-fi, The Surge offers a unique blend of Souls-like gameplay with a futuristic, dystopian setting. As you navigate the dangerous, industrial world, you’ll face a variety of mechanical foes and challenging boss encounters, all while uncovering the story of a failed utopia.

Much like Ashen, The Surge emphasizes tactical combat and offers a range of powerful weapons and armor to help you on your journey. One particularly interesting feature of The Surge is its limb-targeting system, which allows you to focus your attacks on specific body parts of your enemies.

This adds a layer of strategy to each encounter, as you’ll need to decide whether to aim for a quick kill or go for a more challenging target to secure valuable crafting materials.

The Surge also shares Ashen’s penchant for exploration and environmental storytelling. As you progress through the game, you’ll uncover hidden areas, audio logs, and NPCs that help to flesh out the world and its inhabitants.

If you’re looking for a unique, sci-fi twist on the Souls-like formula, The Surge is an excellent choice.


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In Absolver, you’ll find a refreshing take on the Souls-like genre, focusing on fluid, martial arts-inspired combat and deep character customization. This action RPG offers a rich, interconnected world to explore, filled with hidden secrets, powerful enemies, and a wealth of customization options.

One of the standout features of Absolver is its unique combat system. Unlike Ashen, Absolver allows players to create their own custom movesets, mixing and matching a wide array of combat styles to suit their playstyle.

This level of depth and personalization adds an extra layer of replayability, as you’ll always have new techniques to learn and master.

In addition to its deep combat mechanics, Absolver also offers an engaging multiplayer experience. You can team up with other players to explore the world together or engage in intense, skill-based PvP duels.

The game’s focus on player interaction and cooperation sets it apart from many other Souls-like titles, offering a fresh and engaging experience for fans of Ashen and the genre.

If you’re looking for a game that combines the difficulty and exploration of Ashen with a unique, martial arts-inspired twist, Absolver is a must-try.


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Hellpoint transports players to a dark, sci-fi universe where they’ll uncover the secrets of a derelict space station and battle monstrous creatures lurking in the shadows. This action RPG shares many similarities with Ashen in terms of difficulty, exploration, and combat mechanics, all wrapped up in a unique, cosmic horror setting.

The game’s atmospheric environments and twisted enemies provide a perfect backdrop for its challenging gameplay. Hellpoint’s combat is visceral and demanding, with players needing to master a variety of weapons and abilities to survive the onslaught of cosmic horrors.

Like Ashen, the game rewards tactical thinking and careful planning, as each enemy encounter can prove deadly.

One intriguing feature of Hellpoint is its dynamic events system. As you progress through the game, you’ll encounter various events that are tied to the space station’s orbit around a black hole. T

hese events can change the game world, opening up new areas or causing powerful enemies to spawn. Hellpoint also supports split-screen co-op, a rare feature in modern gaming that allows you and a friend to team up and tackle the game’s challenges together.

If you’re a fan of Ashen’s punishing gameplay and love a good dose of cosmic horror, Hellpoint is a fantastic choice.

Darksiders 3

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Darksiders 3 brings a fresh perspective to the Souls-like genre, combining elements of exploration, combat, and puzzle-solving in a post-apocalyptic world. As the third entry in the Darksiders series, this action RPG follows Fury, one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, on her quest to hunt down the Seven Deadly Sins.

While the game’s setting and story might differ from Ashen’s, Darksiders 3 shares many similarities in terms of gameplay and difficulty. Players will need to master a range of powerful abilities and weapons, facing off against challenging enemies and massive bosses.

Exploration is also a key component of Darksiders 3, with the game’s interconnected world offering plenty of secrets and hidden areas to uncover.

Fury’s unique abilities and arsenal set Darksiders 3 apart from other games on this list. As you progress through the game, Fury will unlock new powers, each tied to a specific elemental form.

These forms not only offer new combat options but also open up new pathways for exploration and puzzle-solving. If you’re a fan of Ashen’s challenging gameplay and enjoy the idea of playing as a powerful, supernatural protagonist, Darksiders 3 is well worth your time.

And there you have it – 8 soul-stirring games that share the same heart and spirit as Ashen. Each of these titles offers a unique experience, blending challenging gameplay, atmospheric worlds, and unforgettable adventures.

Whether you’re drawn to the eerie world of Hollow Knight, the brutal landscapes of The Surge, or the martial arts mastery of Absolver, there’s something here for every Ashen fan.

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