If you hadn’t guessed by now, I’m somewhat partial to a good adventure.
I like to go to new places, I like to experience new things, I like the fantasy and wonderment of literature, film and game.
It’s no surprise then that when a game such as UnEpic comes along, it pops up on my radar.
Developed by Francisco Téllez de Meneses, published by EnjoyUp and Ninjagamers Corp, UnEpic was originally released in 2011 for PC and later ported to the WiiU in 2014, UnEpic has now made its way onto the Xbox One and PS4.
Following the story of Daniel, a very average, normal guy who enjoys the finer things in life (see: video games, movies, comic books). Daniel finds his Dungeons & Dragons game interrupted when he is whisked away from the bathroom in his friend’s house to the evil castle Harnakon within a magical fantasy realm.
Daniel is greeted and possessed by a mysterious shadow spirit in an attempt to take over his body and kill him, but the possession doesn’t take hold, so the spirit is trapped within Daniel until he dies, which then becomes the spirit’s sole purpose, to ensure Daniel’s death and free itself.
Needless to say, this makes for some very amusing commentary between the two characters.
In fact, UnEpic brings a very well written script full of gaming and movie references, plenty of humour and a surprising amount of depth to the player.
This, paired with the explorative nature of the game, akin to the old “Metroidvania” games, with its map layout and equipment system, UnEpic feels very close to its side scrolling platform adventure rpg roots but still feels like a modern game, with the ability to quick change between weapons and map favourites to your different shoulder buttons.
Graphically speaking, again, this game pays homage to its predecessors with a wonderfully retro NES feel to its style, using simple sprites, old style background textures and nostalgic colour palette of consoles gone by.
Playing this game on console, it feels very fluid. With the ability to quickly change your weapons and items, you can swap your loadout to best suit the enemies ahead, which some of you may think would make the game too easy, but here’s the trick – In each new map location, you only have a limited amount of visibility afforded to you by your zippo lighter, with the player having to find and light wall lamps and torches. This darkness mechanic makes new areas more of a challenge. I mean, we’re not talking Ninja Gaiden or Dark Souls levels of difficulty, but still, very enjoyable.
Overall, I can see myself playing this game for quite some time. This appeals to my very core as a gamer, reminding me of the games I grew up on; Super Metroid, Castlevania, the earlier Final Fantasy games. It harkens back to the very essence of roleplaying, with head nods to the tabletop origins of fantasy games and very heavy influences from the history of the genre.
UnEpic captures the imagination and feels quite the opposite, a very epic and wonderfully crafted game, well worth a look.
Available online now for digital download across formats for around £10, I would definitely recommend this game.
I’ll probably also be showcasing my adventures on this game in the near future, which you’ll be able to find here.
In the meantime, stay awesome, adventure well, don’t dig too deep and may your dice forever roll favourably.
I’ve been and shall remain,