Monday, August 8, 2022

Immortals Fenyx Rising – Myths of the Eastern Realm Review

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If you liked Immortals Fenyx Rising and we’re thrilled that this second installment of DLC will take you to a whole new location with a whole new protagonist, well, you better check out that excitement at the door. The myths of the Eastern Kingdom indeed present a different place and protagonist, but “new” would be a long way down the list of words I would use to describe it. This six to eight hour adventure is cut from the same fabric as its parent game – albeit with a slightly different pattern, and the result looks too familiar with little to tell it apart.

As the title suggests, Myths of the Eastern Realm is inspired by Chinese mythology and introduces us to a torn world, the balance between heaven and earth shattered and all humans turned to clay. A mortal named Ku (male only, there is no female option) somehow survives and seeks help from the goddess Nuwa, the original creator of all living things, in the hope the damage can be repaired. The setup might seem epic, but unfortunately it never really holds up.

Myths of the Eastern Realm certainly makes a strong visual impression, however, thanks to its richly detailed world and varied topography of its new map. From one of the many elevated vantage points one usually sees temples and pagodas perched atop rocky cliffs, waterfalls splashing to feed meandering rivers, and verdant plains giving way to bamboo forests or flowery groves. And when an unbelievably large moon rises on a hazy night, shining an ethereal light over an already stunning landscape, I invariably took the time to drink it all.

The myths of the Eastern Kingdom world were shattered, the balance between Heaven and Earth was shattered, and all humans turned to clay.

The aesthetic matches the theme well then, but from a functional standpoint, moving around, fighting enemies, collecting resources and achieving goals feels exactly like in Fenyx’s adventure: always good, but nothing for s. to excite or reinvigorate the gameplay after the 30 hours we spent with this foundation last year. Ku has the same set of climbing and gliding abilities, and the same implementation of Far Sight for marking puzzles, objectives, and collectibles in the field. The map in this expansion is filled with enemy camps, challenges, and upgrade materials, and they’re all functionally identical to the Golden Isle. Ku’s weapons, armor, stamina, and health are also improved in the same way, sometimes with extremely familiar animations, while collecting the ingredients to turn them into potions is the same. Well, other than the fact that you collect peaches instead of pomegranates.

Of course, you may no longer venture into the underworld via the vaults of Tartaros, but instead ascend to ruined temples that float amidst a blue sky, but the differences are superficial. Instead of solving puzzles with moving platforms, you now solve puzzles with moving clouds. And instead of receiving a Lightning Shard from Zeus to boost your stamina at the end of a Vault, you get Sky Agate at the end of a Heavenly Ruin. He also improves your endurance.

Even enemies take on the same roles whether you’re talking about the chimerical Fei, who teamed up with the Gorgons, or the Winged Beasts, which might as well be Harpies for all the difference it made. And then there are the many variations of ethereal soldiers, some of which teleport and some have shields that must be crushed with heavy ax attacks, just like they did throughout Fenyx Rising.

Immortals Fenyx Rising – Myths of the Eastern Realm Review Screenshots

And of course, the Constellation puzzles from the main game of Immortals can now be called Bagua puzzles, but it’s the exact same thing with the same reward, and invariably involves some well-worn staples like moving crates around to weigh down pressure switches. With so many similar sensations, I was delighted to find some new wrinkles in Eastern Realm’s puzzle design, such as crates that can be toggled between small and large, and areas where Ku’s stamina is depleted. and you are forced. to work around this limitation, but these are hardly game changes. my reviews on the puzzle designs in the base game stay here. These puzzles are good, but they are neither cool nor inspiring.

Of course, Immortals Fenyx Rising made up for some of their professional puzzle design with the strength of their personality. The double act storytelling of Zeus and Prometheus laid the groundwork for the story not to be taken too seriously, as supporting gods crowded in to insist that Greek mythology is like a great cosmic soap opera. . Even the big bad, Typhoon, stepped in theatrically to make sure we were always in tune with the larger threat.

Ku is a pretty sympathetic protagonist and is written with a certain lightness, but I didn’t find much to hook in the story …

It was fun and – for the most part – engaging, and I miss it here. Myths of the Eastern Realm is much cleaner and too bad for that. Ku is a fairly likeable protagonist and is written with a certain lightness, but I didn’t find much to hook into the story, and the characters just aren’t strong enough to bolster it. Take the goddess Nuwa, for example: her role is essentially mollycoddle Ku; to try to stop him from doing anything and then to scold him when he did that thing, she told him not to do it. It’s not exactly fascinating, and it’s absolutely not my idea of ​​the video game escape.

From a gameplay perspective, Ku hits the ground in Myths of the Eastern Realm. Unlike Fenyx, he begins his adventure with almost all of his skills upgraded – he can chain dodge, throw enemies, slow down time while shooting his bow in the air, parry in counters, attack in sprint, and more. It makes sense to do this given that everyone will be coming from an almost fully upgraded Fenyx, but it is too bad there are no new additions to these skill trees to vary the gameplay and make Ku play as a different character.

The new God Seals system ascends through three levels as Ku fights …

The only effort Myths of the Easter Realm makes to differentiate itself is the new God Seals system, which is an onscreen indicator that climbs through three levels as Ku fights, making his attacks faster and more aggressive and opening up. super loaded versions. of two of his divine powers: the blades of Huang Di and the ax of Yan Di. Immortal players will recognize them as the Wrath of Ares and Hammer of Hephaistos, respectively, but this time they have unique upgrades to unlock. Despite this, the role they play in combat is essentially the same, and they are joined by Fenyx’s other divine powers, all of which are functionally the same but with new names, and all of which are fully upgraded out of the box. wears and therefore never changes.

I understand that creating new God Skill and Power Trees may be beyond the scope of this DLC, but what is a smaller, paddle-swapped version of a game I already have? play?


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