Cult of the lamb is a very strange game with a somewhat twisted sense of humor and a very distinctive art style. Elements of games like Hades or Dead Cells with roguelike dungeon runs added to a settlement builder where you manage resources and cultists akin to something like Stardew or Oxygen Not Included with this very distinct paper cut out in 3d graphics like Don't Starve with cute music and sprites and this very dark sense of humor.
You play as the titular Lamb sacrificed by cultists to prevent a prophesy you rise again empowered by the red crown tasked to build a cult to repay your debt to the one who waits the god like being who revived you.
Gameplay involves a few things crusading where you fight through randomly generated dungeons gathering resources and fighting first the minions of the cult and then the bishops. You begin each run with random weapons and curses (which are magic spells) and as you progress you gather new weapons and random modifier cards that enhance your powers or add more hearts or some such. As you play you unlock more weapons powers and cards that you can then use on further runs.
You also gather resources seeds for various plants blueprints for buildings and also converts to your cult.
This feeds into the second aspect of the game is the settlement and cultist part of the game. You have a small area of land to start where your cult is established. Your converted cultists live in this area and it's up to you to keep them happy. Each cultist has a random appearance and set of traits which either boost aspects like getting more faith under certain conditions or are more negative like they take more to upgrade or they produce less belief. You need to manage your cultists health by making sure the area is kept clean and also making sure they have places to rest and if they fall ill somewhere to recover. You also need to make sure they are fed by cooking various meals from resources you harvest or grow in your settlement. The third aspect is you have to maintain their faith by doing sermons or rituals or providing blessings or gifts. Your cultist can then be assigned various task initially just gathering wood or stone or they can be made to worship at the cult shrine which produces devotion that you use to upgrade your settlement and unlock various new buildings which allow more options like a farm where cultist can water and tend to crops or a mine to get stone and so on.
Cultist wander about and level up as their faith is rewarded and produce more devotion get better at their tasks. They also sometimes offer quests for you to do to gain resources or devotion.
As you gather more devotion you can then construct more buildings or upgrade various parts of your cult for more and different options on other aspects of the cult or to influence the roguelike parts of the game. You also unlock other areas you can go to that offer other minigames and different resources like the fishing area which allows you to catch fish to use in cooking as well as other treasure from the sea.
Each element feeds into the other so the Settlement stuff boosts the weapons and skills you can get access to in the dungeon part and the dungeon part can provide resources and new cultists to improve you settlement its an interesting balance between the two elements that works well. You can start in the settlement make some food do some tidy up give a quick sermon and set up some new buildings then knowing what you need resource wise either do a dungeon run or go somewhere you've unlocked in the world maybe try and pick up some more cultists or unlock some new building or power.
The dungeon combat is fun and well paced and feels satisfying a nice variety of different feeling weapons elemental effects and spells and the general combat is quick and responsive. There's a lot of dodge rolling and diving in for an attack or quickly using a spell which while casting slows time a little. Enemy sprites seem to telegraph attacks well either with a flashing white or a indicated attack point or just recognizable patterns. Bosses are nice big events with reasonable difficulty so far. It feels like a challenge but not an insurmountable one. The random element of the weapons and spells you get and the random cards makes for a nice change in gameplay each run.
The art style is great the cute animal cultists the lamb itself all very smiley fun but with a twisted edge to it. The darkness and eldritch horrors the dark humor in the animation and dialogue it has some really nice particle effects and the music is pretty good.
It manages to combine a lot of different stuff into a nicely cohesive gameplay and works well as a pick up play a few runs and then put down sort of roguelike game. It runs pretty well on the steamdeck too although it took a little getting used to there is maybe a little too much going on for the smaller screen at first.
If you like either roguelikes or settlement builders give this one a go. It's on Steam and consoles there is a switch version which work well.