Posted: January 19
A game that feels like it is a lot more than it is, which is of course a bad thing, but it's a good game none the less. The art style is wonderful, the lore of the world is a brilliant parallel to Nordic mythology, but sadly, for all the choices the game gives you, it's still very linear, which is very fine for the first playthrough, but outside of making your life easier on successive plays, or unlocking achievements, it doesn't really warrant extra playthroughs in my book.
Now, don't get me wrong, I absolutely love character based stories, and this game features several interesting and diverse characters, set in a seemingly rich world of vikings, varls, dredge, and ancient history. I say seemingly, because this first installment is too short to give you an actual view of the world as a whole, but rather, you get glimpses into the mythology of the world, and the local settlements. Of course, this is meant as a series, so I am sure much more of this world will be revealed in the subsequent games, so don't take that as too much of a criticism.
Graphics wise, the game is quite a thing of beauty, and the style is very deliberately "raw". The handdrawn landscapes are marvelous, and the game's artstyle was something I personally fell in love with. Even the animations are top notch quality, and there seems to be weight in the sprites as they get hit and move around.
Gameplay is kind of retro, but in the good way. Think Fire Emblem, Shining Force, etc, turn based, grid combat. It's well balanced, and in my playthrough, even the most hopeless battle was winnable, hard fought as though it may have been. There are some unique mechanics, such as how health, damage and armor is calculated, adjecency effects, as well as abilities that lets you manipulate the position of the enemy characters, and much more.
And the music/sound? I wish I could've gone into some greater detail with it, but it's been a long time since I played this, and I recall it being good.