I recently had the pleasure of diving into the immersive world of Immortals of Aveum on the Series X, and I must say, it is a really great experience.
One of the standout features of Immortals of Aveum is its captivating world. The game takes you on an epic journey as you assume the role of an Immortal, Jak, tasked with saving the world of Aveum and ending once and for all a never ending conflict aptly named the Everwar. The narrative is richly woven, filled with intriguing characters, unexpected twists.
The thing that struck me the most was the actual lore or world building that Immortals of Aveum. It truly feels like a living breathing world where all things have a history of what has happened, why and who were/are the main players in this universe.
Jak is a great character and one of my favourites in recent memory. He is funny, quippy and has a comment for nearly everything that happens to him or around him. Yes, while he embarks on the true and tried "hero journey", but he feels like a real character, expresses his emotions all throughout the game and rises to the call. His interactions with the rest of the excellent cast is also something that kept me hooked on.
The gameplay mechanics in Immortals of Aveum are smooth and responsive. Whether engaging in intense combat or solving puzzles, the controls feel intuitive and precise. The game seamlessly combines elements of action, exploration, and puzzle-solving, providing a well-rounded and engaging gameplay experience.
Played in a first person perspective, the movement feels great. Jak can run, double jump, hover for a while, has a quick dash ability and can use a grappling hook to well, grapple to fixed points in the environment. These abilities, and some other I won't spoil, gradually unlock as you progress through the story and create this sort of like metroidvania style of gameplay where if you visit previous areas, there are more stuff to unlock, see and explore.
I really liked the exploration in the game. Every nook and cranny has something for you to discover, be that a breakable box or chest with some gold or other crafting materials or an engagning puzzle that rewards you with a chest containing some gear.
Yes, the game has tiered gear like you can equip different rings that offer buffs to your different attacks or bracers that buff your defensive abilities and sigils/gauntlets that Jak uses to focus his magical abilities. They grant stat boosts and buff to your character but they can also alter how certain spells work.
Speaking of the spells, there are three types in the game, red, blue and green. Basically, they work like straight up guns where the blue one is for medium to long range sorta like a rifle or DMR, the green one is for medium range like an SMG and the red magic is just a shotgun for close quarte combat. There are different sigils you can find or craft that affect how each one of these magic "guns" behave. For example, a green sigil can turn your projectiles into a few homing projectiles, while another one can quickly shoot 100 weaker projectiles with some recoil added to balance things out. The red sigils can alter your shotgun so that it can shoot one massive projectile or 3 to 4 medium ones. It's a lot of fun checking out how the sigils and the other pieces of gear change things up when it comes to combat and traversal.
You also unlock some more powerful spells that use bars of mana to execute and an ultimate spell that needs to be charged as you progress and let me tell you, these spells are quite devastating to the enemies and beautiful to see.
Enemies are varied too and as you progress through the game new more powerful foes are introduced for example that have different colored shields you need to attack with the respective magic to bring down or other enemies that are basically immune to attacks apart from the respective color. Then there are boss fights which although were easy in the medium difficulty, were a ton of fun to fight against.
Visually, Immortals of Aveum is a stunning. The team at Ascendant Studios has done a fantastic job at utilizing most of Unreal 5 and it shows. The art design is beautiful and the maps are detailed bringing the world of Aveum to life. From lush forests to towering mountains, every environment is beautifully rendered, creating a truly immersive experience. The lighting effects and particle physics further enhance the visual spectacle, making each moment feel magical. The same can be said for the characters. I guess they have used Unreal's MetaHuman to bring them to life cause they look impeccable and of course, it helps a lot that they have some series talent behind their performances.
The sound design in Immortals of Aveum is fantastic too, further immersing you in the game's world. Each spell sounds powerful and impactful. The choice of music is also interesting as it shifts from grand orchestral pieces to low-fi hip-hop beats, and I think that's highly unique, loved it.
In terms of performance, Immortals of Aveum runs smoothly on the Series X. The game, for the majority of the time, maintains a stable frame rate, allowing for smooth gameplay even during intense action sequences. However, some times when there are tons of particle effects on the screen, there are a few drops in here and there, but nothing too crazy that it takes you out of the experience. The quick load times and reduced loading screens enhance the overall experience, keeping you fully engaged in the game's world.
I really enjoyed my time with Immortals of Aveum. With its breathtaking visuals, engaging gameplay, and humorous storytelling, it offers a truly enjoyable experience. It's a straight up single player experience with no microtransactions or anything else that hinders your experience. I highly recommend this game!
The game was reviewed on a Series X using a promo code provided by EA. Immortals of Aveum is out now on PC, PlayStation and Xbox.