Immortals of Aveum is best described as an action shooter without guns. Instead of an AK-47, you’re given a magical gauntlet that can pew-pew out all sorts of different spells and there’s a large world to explore with some cool parkour elements while trying to hunt down a bad magician who is hungry for power.
While Immortals of Aveum does have an overarching narrative about this so-called “Everwar” and how the world was divided up into these different regions, it sadly takes itself a little too seriously for its own good and as a result, gets lost between the lines. But I played as Jak – a rare breed of a magician called a Triarch who can wield all three types of magic instead of being locked into one. He then gets enrolled into this group called the Immortals to help fight against Sandrakk and his armies.
Immortals of Aveum is also a wartime story and most of the game is spent shooting things with your hand and exploring the magical world – which is actually gorgeous when you ignore all the vast technical issues this game has.
Most of Immortals of Aveum relies on the theme of magic types. Even though you would assume Red is Fire, Blue is Water and Green is Earth magic, that actually isn’t the case. Instead, these types of magic don’t really tie into a specific element. Red is more of a brute-force spell that acts as a shotgun blast. I also got a gauntlet which turned my red spells into grenade-like explosions.
Blue spells are then a mix of shield-shattering attacks and sniper shots. Green then slows down enemies and can deal corrosive damage. While I want to say this magic system had direction, it sadly felt all over the place.
Enemies do have weaknesses in different types of spells. Blue enemies are best hit with blue spells and shields are broken with the same type of magic too. However, that doesn’t mean there was a concurrent theme across the game’s mechanics. Blue magic included sniper shots and an Arcane spell that saw rocks shoot from the ground below right in front of me. This means there’s potentially a different spell for every enemy and scenario but toggling between it all can be somewhat cumbersome.
I felt as if Ascendant Studios mapped a spell to every possible button on the DualSense Controller and it all gets a little clumsy in the heat of the battle. I often felt like the game was slower than it needed to be at times too. For example, I would often spam the healing item to refill my health only for Jak to completely ignore the input resulting in death.
It also doesn’t help that enemies are kind of annoying. Spell tracking felt in their favour. I would walk to the side of an incoming projectile only for the enemy to automatically hit my next movement path. The only way to avoid this was to blink which has a cooldown and is limited at times. The game also encourages movement with no cover opportunities besides an odd pillar here and there which I used as a makeshift protector.
Then again, Jak gets a cool grapple to swing around with but most of the battle locations in the game didn’t include a single grapple point. This was a wasted opportunity in my opinion. It would have been a lot more enjoyable to get the distance between an enemy by lashing onto a point and swinging there.
The game’s combat only gets more cumbersome later down the line when enemy waves are increased and Jak is still left with pretty much the same arsenal of weapons. Sure, a skill tree increases a few damage stats here and there but the lack of power wasn’t the issue. It is that Jak is slow, switching spells isn’t fast enough, getting around is limited to a blink timer and no grapple hooks around don’t help either. So I was forced to give up other stats to add a second blink to my movement because that’s the only solution even if it sucked.
There are some great battles in Immortals of Aveum but those are also far and few between. I felt as if boss fights were underwhelming and mini-boss fights just ended up being enemy introductions which added the brute into the general combat going forward.
While there are a lot of spells, not all of them work with the game’s current flow. Some items such as the green balls which slowed enemies down, felt pointless when (it felt like) hundreds of enemies were attacking me. Who do you possibly use that on? Even a shatter attack left me vulnerable for some time and when the combat gets intense, these moments get in the way.
Outside of the combat, Immortals of Aveum does deliver a fully-realised world. Most of the locations are explorable with hidden pathways and puzzles. These puzzles also rely on guess what? Colour-coded magic. I was also forced to return to previous areas to get past certain puzzles which I didn’t have the ability for yet.
For the most part, the world design is done quite well. Environments are brought to life with highly-detailed assets and busy scenes. Some more than others. However, Immortals of Aveum is also a technical mess. I get the use of Unreal Engine 5.1 but on PS5 this game is fugly. I could guess it is running at 900p 60FPS and this low resolution affects the entire experience. Everything is low-res, textures are blurry and distant objects have terrible anti-aliasing edges.
It was hard to enjoy the world in Immortals of Aveum given how poorly-delivered this game was. There’s also no HDR support at all and you can’t tweak gamma and brightness. The “Display” options literally include one toggle for colour blind mode. Swapping between Immortals of Aveum and say, any other game I was playing even on Switch, made me realise how bad it looked.
Sure, from a technical perspective, the game uses Unreal Engine’s latest and greatest tech but at 900p, you can’t enjoy this at all. It breaks the immersion. Things get even worse during intense combat as the busy scenes are cluttered with low-resolution particle effects and explosions.
I do have to commend the team on the excellent facial work. Immortals of Aveum’s are mostly delivered in a superb way thanks to Unreal Engine’s facial animations. They look incredible and every emotion is clearly portrayed in these characters. Some scenes are a bit wonky but there’s more to enjoy here than not.
This helps carry the game’s mediocre story too. While I enjoyed some of the characters in Immortals of Aveum, the story is all over the show. It takes itself way too seriously for its own good. That is to say, there are some scenes that were enjoyable to watch. Sadly, Jak is a pain and highly unlikable so he often gets in the way here too.
I enjoyed moments in Immortals of Aveum. It is a beautiful showcase and I wish I got a code on PC now so I could enjoy the visuals a bit more. However, the gameplay is highly repetitive which makes this a chore to get through. The worldbuilding and lore are interesting and the environments help tie it all together but then again, on PS5 this game doesn’t look great at all. So it is hard to appreciate the best it has to offer.
This Immortals of Aveum review is based on a PS5 code sent to us by EA Games. The game is out today on PS5, Xbox Series X/S and PC from R1499.
Immortals of Aveum Review
Immortals of Aveum has good foundations but its cumbersome combat and repetitive gameplay struggle to carry this cheesy magic shooter to greatness.