I’ve spent some time with God & Monsters during the holidays – sorry, I mean Immortals Fenyx Rising of course – Ubisoft had to change the title because Monster Energy reportedly objected to it. And let me tell you right away, It feels like Ubisoft has something big going on here.
Immortals Fenyx Rising is developed by Ubisoft Quebec and is a distinct action-adventure game in a style – that you can tell – fits nicely within Ubisoft’s comfort zone. Had the game been called Kid Icarus: Breath of the Wild, I would not have been surprised, because that’s exactly what it feels like. That is not a bad move by any means however, I’ll get back to it later.
The game – set within the fantasy of Greek mythology – puts the player in the control of Fenyx, whose brother and friends is turned to stone when a storm strands the crew on the Golden Isle. In line with other recent Ubisoft titles (like Assassins Creed Valhalla), Fenyx is a already named protagonist but you have a lot of control over his or her (your choice) design. The initial character creation is actually very well put together, allowing detailed additions such as skin tones, tattoos and scars. The side commentary from Zeus makes the whole experience quite fun and don’t worry, players will have the opportunity to change their design as they progress.
The Golden Isles is the large open world where players will spend most of their time exploring to find all its secrets, which consist of puzzles, arches, treasures and lots of pomegranates (the elixir of life). And let me tell you this – Golden Isles looks amazing and players will truly enjoy exploring each area thoroughly.
Fenyx can climb, swim and glide to most locations. How far Fenyx can go will depend on your stamina bar, which dictates all the actions that can be performed – just as in Breath of the Wild. Speaking of Breath of the Wild, let’s just get it out of the way since you can’t play this game without making comparisons to Nintendos masterpiece. You’ll no doubt see a lot that is very similar to Breath of the Wild, in fact it’s a comparison that Ubisoft Quebec wants you to make, since they have actually learned and improved a lot from it. And for the love of god, name a game developer that hasn’t let themselves being inspired by Nintendo.
The combat in Immortals Fenyx Rising is very similar to Assassin’s Creed Odyssey with the right trigger and shoulder buttons being used to attack with Fenyx’s different weapons. The left trigger equips the bow and holding the left shoulder button unleashes special moves. Fenyx’s main attacks are split between light and heavy, with the swords allowing for quick and light attacks while using the Axe will deal heavy damage helping to fill up the enemies stun meter faster.
Players will also be able to upgrade their skill in the Hall of the Gods after the prologue with the Charon coins collected from Myth Challenges. Players have access to each of Fenyx’s moves via a skill tree with each new upgrade costing a certain amount of coins. There’s a lot to choose from here, players can focus on extending Fenyx’s combos or increase airborne attacks or even just forget them and work on the godly powers. The skill tree is very complex without being too complicated, the diversity here is fully welcomed allowing players to create a version of Fenyx they are happy with.
It might not be a masterpiece like the game that it takes so much inspiration from, but it is ambitious and impressive in its own right. Not only is it charming, but Immortals Fenyx Rising‘s world is a joy to explore and a blast to play. Stuffed with combat, collectibles, mysteries, puzzles, and a healthy dollop of family-friendly good-humour, there’s a lot of bang for your buck. I’m looking forward to my next session.
Immortals Fenyx Rising is available on PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4 and PS5. I reviewed the game on Playstation 5 with a code provided by the publisher.