Wanting to know if there are bonfire checkpoints in Mortal Shell is a worthy question to ask. The game is a lot like Dark Souls and other Soulslike games and bonfires are a staple of the genre. So being one of those games, it’s worth asking: Are there bonfires in Mortal Shell?
Are there bonfire checkpoints in Mortal Shell?
There aren’t technically bonfires in Mortal Shell. There’s not a direct one-to-one equivalent, but the closest thing to bonfires are the Sesters, which you can see in the above picture. These doll-like beings are found throughout the land and act as checkpoints in a way similar to the bonfires. Dying sends you back to them, they fully heal you when you drink their Divine Tar after talking to them, all of the enemies respawn when you do so, and you can upgrade your character with glimpses (but not weapon) after speaking with them.
Besides being actual beings, the biggest difference is their scarcity. There are only around nine of them in the entire game and only one in all of Fallgrim (the green hub area in the world). And since that is the first area, it can seem as though there is nothing like the bonfires, especially since you have to find the first Sester and she might not be on the first path you choose to go down when dropping in.
The first Sester is in the Fallgrim Tower by the Old Prisoner so go there first. This is the path straight ahead of you after you find the Harros shell (more on the shells here) after the game shows you a mini-cutscene. It will subtly urge you to visit the tower down the middle path like the red arrow is doing in the above picture. Go through that path, under the hanging log, and into a courtyard-like area with a big tree in the middle.
She will be in a building on the left with an open door.
There is one at the beginning of each of the sprawling levels and one right near the level’s boss. Two of the areas also have an additional Sester around the halfway point. Be sure to utilize these well and use them as save points. The game is quite mysterious about its saving habits so it’s best to use these as checkpoints and autosave points.