Immortal Unchained is a promising new action RPG in the vein of Dark Souls from Toadman Games. Its key difference from titles like Souls, Surge, and Bloodborne is that it aims to focus heavily on third-person shooting, and rely less on melee. We’ve been playing an Alpha version of the game, and so far we like what we see – even if it’s rough around the edges.
Like all of these games seemingly require, there’s little in the way of background story. You awaken unchained and in prison for crimes you’re uncertain of. The final game will allow you to choose from six different classes (Disciplines), but in this demo, we’re just set off on our quest to get out of the prison and into the frigid air of one of the nine worlds doomed to fall. Obelisks take place of campfires, and enemies respawn when you die, just as they do in Souls. Here you can spend your gained XP and increase your stats, tweak weapons, and upgrade items as well.
While the game style is familiar to fans of Souls games, the ranged combat makes this quite a bit different. Immortal lets you lock onto enemies, a la 3D Zeldas, and strafe around them. Many enemies also fire from a distance, hide behind cover, and you wind up having to use your stamina wisely to dodge their bullets and get in closer to take them out. It works quite well, and while the game suggests you play with a controller, I found the keyboard and mouse to work just fine on PC.
I can say that this game feels a good deal easier than Souls in its early levels, but so did The Surge until its difficulty ratcheted up remarkably. So we’ll have to see what the final form of the game is like before we can say if it’s any less “hardcore” than its forebears in the genre. I will say that the Prometheus-esque aesthetic is quite nice – a blend of Sci-Fi and Horror like something out of a Ridley Scott film. The first boss, a massive gun-wielding robot you must fight to leave the prison, is kind of a letdown. Dodging his bullets was rather easy, and making sure you stayed out of harm’s way meant all you had to do was dodge and fire off bullets for about 5 minutes before the fight was one. Mechanically, it just wasn’t very complex.
Still, I’m quite impressed by what I’ve played, as Immortal: Unchained feels like a decent addition to the Souls-like genre so far. The question is just how good it can be before launch later this year. We’ll be watching it take shape.