Immortals: Fenyx Rising

User Rating: 7 | Immortals Fenyx Rising (Gold Edition) PS5

Immortals: Fenyx Rising is kind of like a wannabe Breath of the Wild. It's fun for the most part, but it definitely drags and lacks the fun and experimentation of BoTW.

You play as Fenyx, a mortal in a world of Ancient Greek Gods who is tasked to stop a big bad guy from imprisoning the Gods and taking over the world. The story is not great, but they do try to add some humor into the story throughout the journey. The jokes are hit or miss; if you like corny dad jokes then you may enjoy it more than the average person. If you hate those jokes, they will easily grind on you. The Gods also narrate your journey as you travel, kind of like Bastion, but not nearly as cool. For the most part, they interrupt you when you're trying to focus on what you're doing and it distracted me more than it entertained me. However, I appreciated that they tried something different. You go around freeing the four Gods and then they help you beat the final bad guy at the end. While their stories are mildly amusing, this is not a game you play for the story unless you love Greek mythology and corny humor.

The gameplay is where this game becomes more of a BoTW/Assassin's Creed game. It's open world, and you can go anywhere you want at any time. The fast travel system is very useful and there are a bunch of different fast travel locations that you can get to anytime you want. You have wings that can glide, just like the parachute from Zelda, and you have health and stamina bars that are very similar as well. You can climb anything as long as you have stamina, and this game has no rain to stop you from climbing all the walls you desire.

The majority of the game is spent traveling the world, collecting items from chests or completing puzzles to upgrade your character. You can upgrade weapons, armor, and your "moves" in combat. There are normal upgrades like being able to dash, but also Godly powers that allow you to use your trusty bird companion to rain down hell on enemies, or a huge hammer that smacks them in the face. There are a ton of collectibles in this game, including ones to upgrade your health potions, stamina potions, and attack and defense potions (all different collectibles).

The puzzles are hit or miss. There are "races" where you have to get to a certain point on the map quickly, there are block-pushing puzzles, and then there are this game's version of the shrines from BoTW. Unfortunately, they aren't nearly as interesting. While many of them are combat shrines, there are also a few clever puzzles thrown in that require using wind or fire to complete a puzzle. My personal favorite was a random shrine I found that had me playing pinball with giant boulders. Overall, they are hit or miss but mostly fall into a lower-end BoTW shrine category. There are also puzzles everywhere outside of shrines, and they generally net you some collectibles that help you upgrade your moves and/or provide new weapons and armor.

The main issue I have with the game is that is follows the Assassin's Creed formula in that all you really do it go up somewhere high, use your scope to find all the things you want to go get, and it marks them all on the map for you. That turns the game into a fetch quest, where you mark them on your map and you just go from point to point collecting things. It takes the sense of adventure and discovery completely out of the game and turns it into a linear experience. The fun of BoTW was actually finding the shrines, and in this game they are just out there marked on your map and *always* guarded by enemies you have to fight to get into the shrine. It gets really old really quick, especially because the variety of enemies is low, and you fight the same monsters over and over and they just get stronger with more health the more you play the game.

Overall, I never had a desire to quit the game, and there were moments of brilliance for sure, but I never felt like the game was really doing anything new or better than the games that inspired it. I liked the cartoony graphics and open-world design (it was a beautiful open world), but it lacks the fun and innovation of other games.

Play time: 38 hours