It doesn’t happen often, but now and then, a game that wasn’t on your radar sneaks up on you and completely takes you by surprise. Ubisoft’s Immortals Fenyx Rising is one of those games.
The game formally known as Gods and Monsters takes players on an epic mythological adventure, think God of War meets The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild with a dash of Assassin’s Creed. You assume the role of a Fenyx, a demigod tasked with the huge mission to help save the Greek gods from the wrath of Typhoid, the baddest Titan of them all who is trying to inflict a curse over the Golden Isle, the home of Zeus, his fellow Gods, and Goddesses. You’re the Gods and the world’s last hope to keep Typhoid from turning the world into a dark place for him and his creatures to rule and terrorize.
Once you accept your task, you are immediately immersed in the beautifully stylized mythical location in the open-world adventure. Immortals Fenyx Rising wins immediately due to the protagonist being customizable, allowing you to determine the gender, skin color, and other features like voice and face paint. You even have the option to throw on red paint on your version of Fenxy’s face, definitely a homage to the legendary video game Spartan, Kratos.
After you have created your Fenyx, it’s time to explore the homeworld of the Gods. At first glance, the map can be very imposing as it is littered with icons you can reveal by going into a first-person view mode. As expected, your character is pretty weak in the beginning stages of your adventure. Your job is to build him or her up by acquiring God-like abilities and collecting different weapons, armor, and legendary items like Daidalos wings that will aid you in your journey.
You can also tame wild creatures like horses and deer so you can ride them to help travel around the map. You will encounter many different types of “mounts” as you explore the Golden Isle, offering different abilities and benefits like more stamina. During my time playing, I actually encountered a wild pegasus. Before I could tame the mythical creature, it disappeared, and I have yet to find the legendary beast again.
Like other adventure games, the protagonist needs to acquire skills to complete certain tasks or areas called vaults. The vaults are massive puzzle-like areas that take you to the underworld that sometimes have mini-bosses, and all contain a secret treasure chest for you to find that usually contains a piece of armor or a weapon. The grand prize for completing a vault is Zeus’s lighting, which is needed to upgrade Fenyx’s stamina gauge. Unlike in Ubisoft’s other franchise, Assassin’s Creed, Fenyx can’t just climb, glide, swim or fight endlessly. Everything revolves around how much stamina Fenyx has, so building that meter up is essential.
Fenyx will also need “Ambrosia,” which is found while exploring the Golden Isle used to upgrade your life meter. When you’re not tackling the main missions, there are plenty of puzzles and side quests that will allow you to earn “Coins of Charon” to spend on upgrading your Godly Abilities and fighting moves so you can have a fighting chance against Typhoid’s powerful creatures. You will be spending hours in the game just trying to build up Fenyx so you can take on the powerful enemies sprinkled all over the map and locating on all of the different types of armor and weapons, which each have different buffs to aid you on your journey.
But what really stood out for me is the game’s exceptional story and the clever decision to use humor to tell the epic tales based on Greek mythology. I found myself laughing a lot listening to the hilarious banter between Zeus and the Titan Prometheus. This isn’t the same Greek mythology you learned about in high school or experienced in God of War. It has more heart to it. Ubisoft managed to make it entertaining without making the game be on a super-serious tip like in God War. You will definitely get a chuckle listening to Zeus add his two sense to stories in the game…trust me.
Immortals Fenyx Rising should definitely be added to your next-gen gaming collection. The game is surprisingly fun, and its lighthearted take on Greek mythology is refreshing while managing to keep things seriously when it needs to be. The story is engaging, and each character you encounter brings something to the game thanks to stellar voice acting. The combat system is fluid, and exploring the Golden Land doesn’t get boring or repetitive thanks to the detail in the level building, so no puzzle or vault feels the same.
The bosses come in different varieties offering players challenging encounters as you trying to figure out their patterns and which of your gear works best against them. Immortals Fenyx Rising is a surprising win for Ubisoft who is closing out the year strongly thanks to its slate of games such as Watch Dogs: Legion and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. I honestly believe the studio has a new potential franchise on its hands with Immortals Fenyx Rising. It’s that damn good.
Photo: Ubisoft/ Immortals Fenyx Riding