Abyss Odyssey, made by ACE Team, a game that takes pride in its procedurally generated levels mixed with a very in-depth combat system that takes cues from the 2D-Fighting genre. It is now left to see if it delivers on both those fronts, but more importantly, seeing how this is ACE Team we are talking about, does it innovate?

ACE Team has never been the one to hold back with petty gaming conventions and always tries to do the extreme in terms of the style, gameplay and overall design identity of their games. With their previous games such as Zeno Clash, you were in a familiar world, but one with farfetched rules and characters.

Fortunately, this game definitely checks out the ACE Team features that we have come used too over the years. If I was to describe this game with a specific genre, it would be an interesting hybrid of Fighter/Rogue-Like. Fighter in the sense that you have these really advanced combo moves with a learn-to-get-better vibe to them, and Rogue-Like in the sense that the death of your character holds weight in regards to your resources and overall progression.

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The procedurally generated world works great with the rogue-like structure, as each time you spawn you are faced with different challenges via different enemies. It always adds a touch of fresh excitement each time you replay. However, don’t expect drastic changes as the basic layout is usually the same, which is kind of a bummer. Still, adding to the replay value are all the collectibles that you can find like weapons and loots, providing you with different play styles.

One of the main reasons that the game works nicely is due to the control feedback. In a fighting game, the controls have to be near pitch-perfect, in order for you to allow rhythm based memorisation for time based attacks. In fact, I didn’t notice heavy character jerkiness or delayed action response; as the game was fun to control from the get go. Though I do think some animations could have been much smoother and some combat attacks a bit more responsive.

Now, one main question most ask whenever the term “rogue-like” is referred to is how hard the game is, because rogue-likes are usually infamous for their difficulty. However, for this game, the rogue-like nature should not posses too much of a challenge for experienced gamers, as it isn’t particularly hard and some gamers have reported finishing it on their first try.

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About the narrative design of the world, it is inspired by Chilean folklore, and various popular mythologies you may have come across in recent pop culture. The dialogue does seem cheesy at times though, and kinda breaks the immersion, making you snicker every once in a while. However, the main storyline is pretty interesting, where you see a warlock who is causing havoc amongst this once bustling place by incarnating monsters from the dark recesses of his mind.

The story is largely moved forward by the interesting character design, and its respective art that is absolutely mesmerising and is definitely my favourite part of the experience. The design of the User Interface is also pretty crisp if I do say so myself, and it is easy to go from one menu to the next without any hassle. There were some loading times and technical hiccups, but nothing that I couldn’t ignore.

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One strong problem I have with the game is that, you really need to invest your time in it if you plan to beat the abyss, as the save system is pretty basic without any checkpoints. So in one sitting you are expected to do at least 2-3 hours of gameplay, or else you will have to start the abyss over, which can be a pain the tenth time.

Overall you can expect to invest good time in this game, unfortunately usually because there isn’t a proper save system, forcing you to play in bulk. Still, with the fun controls, great combat mechanics and beautiful aesthetics make this an enjoyable experience. I highly recommend this rogue-like fans, and those that love the wackiness that is Ace Team. Still there are people who might actually be put-off by the wackiness.  But Abyss Odyssey is worth your consideration none the less.



Author

Haris Iqbal
Haris Iqbal

I am a guy who loves anything with a powerful storyline, whether it be a game, book or movie, it doesn't matter. Just so long as it hooks me in and keeps my imagination captive till the last word/scene! Also, I am huge Silent Hill fan, so I love all things Silent Hill... and anything horror. Huge horror fanatic!