REVIEW: Immortals Fenyx Rising – Gamer.no

Greece is often called the cradle of civilization, but if one looks a little closer at the myths and legends that came with that cradle, it was not always much civilized over them. Take Prometheus, for example. He liked people and thought it would be a good idea to give them a little more to go on, so he gave them fire, strictly against the chief god Zeus’ command. The punishment he received was perhaps a little out of step with the criminal act; he was chained to a mountain on a permanent basis while an eagle came to eat his liver every day. To complete the torture, the liver waxed again every night.

With this pleasant backdrop, Immortal’s Fenyx Rising kicks off. The world has gone a little out of control, and the monster Typhoon has woken up to paralyze the gods, and turn all man into stone. He is naughty, I mean seriously, and in such cases it is only natural that Zeus pays a visit to Prometheus to strike up a conversation, and take a small bet on what the future will bring, as is normal for decadent gods.

The rescue of the world


Greek architecture at sunset. Photo: Øystein Furevik / Gamer.no

We immediately meet Fenyx – man or woman is your choice – ours throughout the journey that follows. You get to choose in the start-up what you want to look like, but you can change this at any time during the game, and that’s good. You should look for a partner for a bad and uncharming character design for a long time, and routinely I get really tired of what he / she looks like, and have to change, but with only a handful of very similar alternatives to choose from, I do not get far. The female voice is also little to shout home about, but that’s probably the way it is when you hire voice code players without comedic timing to deliver bad jokes written by people who do not fully understand humor. Immortals Fenyx Rising has a problem with humor. It tries hard to be funny, and to offer a comic variant of Greek mythology, but it just becomes childish, stupid and eye-popping.

You see, Immortals Fenyx Rising is not just a colorful and beautiful game, and it’s a game that tries to be embarrassingly hard. cool, mainly by doubting that Fenyx is super cool, something that comes through a myriad of stupid animations every time he upgrades something or opens a chest. He mostly appears as a socially backward fool.

History is not terribly interesting. The most interesting thing is actually how Ubisoft has woven many of the ancient Greek myths. Zeus and Preomtheus talk together throughout the game, and when you come to a city or mission of interest, they often start talking about a related myth.

It is only here that the humor in the game now and then, between infantile whims, hits the mark. How many of the myths are conveyed is quite fun, and if you have a good knowledge of them from before, many of the points will be much easier to catch. I also like that the shooters in the game all speak with a thick Greek accent, instead of the typical British voices old societies often get the hang of it.

Take in the view


There is little to say about the view. Photo: Øystein Furevik / Gamer.no

Immortals Fenyx Rising offers a huge value that will take you many hours to explore. We travel to a massive island that is divided into different zones where each zone belongs to a specific god from Greek mythology. Here we find lush, lovely landscapes full of beautiful nature and beautiful buildings, to brown, dry landscapes that primarily offer stone and ancient ruins. Each of them is quite large, and can take you up to 20 hours to complete, if you are to do everything.

When you travel to a new area, in familiar Ubisoft style, you have to climb something very high to look out. This removes the fog that lies above the world map, and you get to see everything that is to be found. What this scout does not do is find things that lie in the landscape, you have to do it manually instead, and it’s a bit of a chore. Not only because it is a laborious process to locate all of the chests, collectibles and riddles, but also because this process strictly speaking removes much of the fun.

If we compare with the game Immortals Fenyx Rising takes most of the inspiration from – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – offered a great, believable value full of things you could discover as you wandered through the landscape and took in everything you saw. Immortals Fenyx Rising uses the Ubisoft method in the city. You climb up to the highest point of the area, and use a pair of binoculars to find everything of interest. Then you go in turn and order until all the things you already know are there, and this takes away some of the magic by wandering around in such an incomparably beautiful game as Immortals Fenyx Rising after all is.

This is an area I strictly miss that Immortals Fenyx Rising is meir as Breath of the Wild. Traveling through Hyrule is like exploring real value, and you never know what you will find. Something that is part of the fun since you suddenly find something you had no idea was there, or see something mysterious in the distance. Immortals Fenyx Rising offers in the city a fairly artificial value that is easy to see is designed for it to be played in. Instead of natural rock formations, we find plateaus that lie on top of each other as building blocks, and heavily concentrated area where it looks like the developers have tried to push as much as possible into the least possible space.

It’s beautiful, by all means, but sometimes I could imagine a little less patching with a little less to do, just so I could take in the view once in a while, and through it find something to go to.


There is a lot to keep an eye on in Immortals Fenyx Rising. Photo: Øystein Furevik / Gamer.no

The elephant in the room

The comparison with Breath of the Wild is not accidental. Immortals Fenyx Rising would never have existed if it were not for Nintendo, and this game is strictly speaking Breath of the Wild if Ubisoft had been behind the levers. Everything from how some things are animated, to how one glides through the air with wings, and to how the world of design is around a quarter of a corner of Nintendo’s successful game.

Much of it is positive. It is unbelievably nice to have wings to fly with, several games should include such, because it makes it possible to get from one city to another to a game. Riddles in the terrain, and dedicated riddle chambers are also beautiful, which I really appreciated. There are plenty of enemies in Immortal’s Fenyx Rising, but what you will spend the most time on are all the puzzles, and the practical challenges.

Some of them are just simple puzzles where you have to make a picture, while others have you shoot an arrow through a series of circles, or maybe you have to solve complex challenges where balls have to be rolled into pits, switches have to be pressed in, and torches shall be lit. There is a lot to take off, and most of it is great fun. There are too few big games of this kind. Games where you can just calm down a bit and use your head.

It’s a bit broken if one has to wait for new Zelda games to get the quota filled up, so it’s absolutely brilliant that Ubisoft is stepping in, especially when the quality is so high. True enough, we find some exceptions. When, for example, one has to fly precision aircraft with a control system that is in no way designed for precision flying, and is to land on things you do not even get to see until you are right over them, it is easy to get annoyed. Fortunately, this is one of the exceptions, but it’s still easy to be a little disappointed when you see what the prize is for having solved a bigger challenge, and all you get is a new color combination for an armor you already have. Seriously, leave the prize in the style of the bet.

Mythological dark men


The Zelda inspiration is striking. Photo: Øystein Furevik / Gamer.no

In a game based on Greek mythology, it goes without saying that one will end up in a brawl with some mythological monsters. The game has far from as much battle as one might have expected, and it’s actually quite ok, since the game offers plenty of other things to work on. The combat system is quickly and competently designed. You primarily have two weapons to attack with – sword and ax – and you can combine the use of these for maximum effect. The focus on parrying or jumping away from attacks is great, and after a quarter of an hour you unlock a solid arsenal of special attacks that help you gadget everything from minotaurs to angry harpies.

Something I especially like about Immortals Fenyx Rising is how playful the combat system is. Of course you can only focus on parry and counter-attacks, but in the face of enemies you can just as easily sneak up on them for a powerful stab in the back, throw a huge rock at them to start the fight with a massive advantage, or shoot arrows at them until they are stunned and you can enter with harder shots.

We also get a number of upgrade options so you can turn Fenyx in the direction you want. A solid selection of armor and home armor also offers various bonuses that can help you shape your own fighting style. A number of these bonuses, on the other hand, are hacked for situation-specific and almost suggest that you should continuously change armor depending on what enemies or situations you are facing. I simply did not mind, and I settled down early with something that gave me advantages in most situations.

One thing the game should have. You can choose what you want to look like regardless of what armor you actually use. If, for example, you have received an armor that you think looks very tough, but which is not good for your purpose, you can still choose that it is the one that will show on Fenyx, even if it is another that is actually used. Such freedom of choice is great, how often have I not had to wear the brightest clothes of all time because it was better than what I had before?

Honorable election machine


Potential riding animals must be handled with care. Photo: Øystein Furevik / Gamer.no

Immortals Fenyx Rising offers some of the greatest freedom of choice I have seen when it comes to how you want to shape your experience. We find settings to help the color blind and hard of hearing, but it goes much further than that. You can adjust how much the dynamics should be between loud and low sounds, and not least how much music the game should offer when you run around the world. The latter I would definitely recommend since the game ceases to be a typical musicless opa verd game, and becomes a far more evocative journey thanks to an absolutely fantastic musical backdrop from Gareth Coker, the composer who recently provided the at least as beautiful music in Ori and the Will of the Wisps.

But the settings do not stop there. We find many settings for how the controller should be used and behaved, and you can remove all or part of the interface to customize so that you only get the information you need or want. You can also choose how much help the game will give you when solving puzzles and similar challenges.

Direct help, we can not call it, but at least I think it’s easier to find out what happened when you step on a switch than to have to grope around blind, but that’s me.

The game could have done a slightly better job of informing that all this is available, because if I had not accidentally noticed all the possibilities when I had to change graphics mode, the whole thing would have passed me by.

Conclusion


The mood changes greatly after all hours of the day. Photo: Øystein Furevik / Gamer.no

Immortals Fenyx Rising is a great, beautiful and entertaining game. It offers many hours of entertainment, and it will require a lot of time effort if you are to get through everything the game offers. This is one of those games where it is very easy to just do one more thing because there is always one or the other waiting behind the next knoll. It is easy to get caught, and suddenly realize that the clock is much more than it should be.

The game clearly draws a lot of inspiration from The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and one notices it in almost everything the game offers. If you enjoyed Breath of the Wild, chances are you will enjoy yourself here as well. The game offers a lot of good variety, where a myriad of different puzzles force you to use the little grays to a much greater extent than most games do.

The biggest attraction here is the world anyway. It is at times dazzlingly beautiful, and no picture devotes it entirely to the respect it deserves. When I just walk through it, it often strikes me how incredibly beautiful the whole thing is, and together with the beautiful music, Ubisoft has managed to create something memorable.

Immortals Fenyx Rising should strictly be the starting point for a new series from Ubisoft. We need more colorful games like this. Just drop the silly humor, and it will be great.

Immortals Fenyx Rising kjemt til Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Stadia, Windows PC, Xbox One og Xbox Series X (testa) 3. desember.

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