Immortals of Aveum

Immortals of Aveum

Not as magic as you were expecting, think more Copperfield than Blane.

Immortals of Aveum

Now… I know all the “cool” kids like to throw shade on EA, but honestly speaking the publishing behemoth have been on some run of games lately.  From the Dead Space Remake, Wild Hearts, Jedi Survivor to yearly sport updates, they have been dishing up some really good games as of late; with the latest title Immortals of Aveum looking to add to this run.  Developed by California based Ascendant Studios – a group comprised of veteran Dead Space and Call of Duty developers – the game may look like a tale of swords and sorcery, but look a little closer and what you’ll find is an FPS with a very interesting twist.

You play as Jak – a young lad living on the streets with a group of his friends, fighting day to day to make ends meet.  That is until one day the city is attacked and… well, a long story short, Jak has hidden powers that leads him to being head hunted to join the order of the Immortals, where he’ll master his power and get payback on the big bad.  It’s an interesting intro and set up, but once you get going pacing is a bit all over the place, with a few time jumps and the like, just as you get going.  On the whole Immortals of Aveum’s tale is OK and holds things together over its run time despite more than a few telegraphed clichés along the way.  Also worth noting this is a game set in a ‘Ye Olde’ world, but the cast talk like you have just walked into the recording studio in 2023.  Sure there are more than a few made up words, but it’s the language and how it’s used that jars.  It reminds me a lot of the dialog from Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur: Legend of the Sword movie, noble kings talking like they’re right off the streets of Brixton… you get me.

Gameplay-wise things get a bit better as you wield a gauntlet the lets you channel your powers or if you like, turns your arm into a gun.  You can switch between three colours of magic which fall into the standard frame work of sniper, SMG and shotgun, though you’ll find new gauntlets as you explore, which put interesting spins on these core idents; along with kit and gear to make you overall more powerful too.  Immortals of Aveum has a number of spells you can cast in both offensive and defensive play, like a shield to protect you from ranged attacks, to a shockwave to knock down groups of enemies.  The most powerful is a beam spell that unleashes all three colours of magic at once (a bit like a Dragan Ball Z kami kami ha attack).  Some of these spells double as ways to move around the world, like lash and limpet – which are put to work in the games “platforming” sections.  On top of this you also have a talent tree with over 80 nodes to unlock, that will give you new powers and buffs that add some fun strategies to the combat.

There is a lot to get your head around and on the control side of things in Immortals of Aveum, with a few buttons are pulling double duty, which makes things in the heat of a battle feel just a bit clunky and cumbersome.  Also having to manually cycle your powers is a pain, instead of picking the one you want there and then.  Fights themselves are fast and frantic with a real DOOM vibe to their arena based nature, but AI can be a bit thick and the variety is a bit limited, yet boss battles are a highlight when they do pop up.  For a game telling a tale of epic magic fuelled wars, you always seem to be fighting just to the left of them, like the big kids are having fun in the deep pool and you’re stuck in the shallow kiddie one.

Visually the game looks good and you’ll need to brace yourself to be bombarded with a torment of colour and screen effects, as you unload your spells because you’ll honestly struggle to keep track of enemies – it’s that thick and dense with effects.  I also spotted an odd blurring to things in the distance, which is very noticeable when in the grander areas; as well on characters faces when you are talking to them.  Sound-wise it’s all fitting with OK voice acting from the likes of Darren Barnet, Gina Torres and Antonio Aakeel.  Immortals of Aveum has some really fun ideas and at times it all comes together well, as you swap out your magic attacks jumping around a ruined city and blasting evil magic users.  However, it’s also bogged down with things like iffy controls, lack of variety and constricted areas.  If you’re looking for an interesting spin on the FPS genre it ticks that box, but it struggles to truly stick the landing.

An Xbox review copy of Immortals of Aveum was provided by EA’s PR team, and the game is out now on Xbox, PlayStation and PC for around £60.

The Verdict

7Good

The Good: Fresh feeling combat | Tonnes of particle effects | Lots of secrets to uncover

The Bad: Some visual issues | Controls are clunky at times | Story is so-so | Use of language is jarring | Hints at much more epic moments than you get

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Stuart Cullen

Scotland’s very own thorn in the side of the London gaming scene bringing all the hottest action straight from The Sun… well… The Scottish Sun at least, every week!

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