Reaper Of Immortals Review: Let’s Talk About Death, Baby

Reap a series of souls in the hope that it'll make sense of your past in pixel art platformer Reaper of Immortals - out now on PC.

All games are given a fair go on these pages, and try as one might not to provide a bias, indie games will get an ickle bit more attention – especially when the big boys might not cover them. Reaper of Immortals may be one such game, but like the solo dev Mounaim, there’s only one of me, so I hadn’t finished the game in its entirety before giving this review.

Yes, yes – send the reaper for me if you must, but let’s be realistic here – I can’t finish everything (though this is on my playlist and will continue after I’ve posted this). In short, there’s no overall score here, but hopefully, the right choices of words without any AI input will indicate what I think of it.

You guessed it, Reaper of Immortals is about death. You play one such reaper as they traverse the world of limbo with a mission of culling lives and bringing balance. As one might expect, you aren’t entirely welcome here – what with all the killing and all, plus, you’ve got this thing with your memory and can’t quite remember who you are…

Reaper of Immortals Review - Absolute bull
Absolute bull. Source: Steam

Reaper of Immortals Review (PC)

The story here is integral to the game, and while it’s one of the strong points, the gameplay is good enough as a standalone – without it, you would have ambiguity. That’s not so bad, though. Either way, you begin your mission searching for souls to reap and fill in all the blanks.

The lore and world-building in Reaper of Immortals are very good, and an ominous statue satisfies your thirst for knowledge, but at the end of the day, you want to go around hitting stuff mindlessly, right? As a pixel art platformer adventure, I was put off by the visuals as they were a little hard to see at times, but after playing Robolt, it put everything in perspective!

The reaper is armed with a scythe and a basic attack. Within next to no time, there are two variations of the weapon; one hitting harder, the other healing outside of combat, albeit the overall health will drop. It’s an interesting mechanic as you aren’t limited to using just one, but on occasion, it’s necessary to switch as one of the specials allows passing through a portal, and the regeneration skill is invaluable in boss fights.

Reaper of Immortals Review - I'm a creep
I’m a creep. Source: Steam

Let There Be Death

Reaper of Immortals consists of five chapters, set over multiple biomes. At first, it feels like there will be a repeat of enemy units throughout, but there’s a good range throughout. Some stand out more than others, but the archers have to be the best with their self-aware arrows that defy gravity.

There isn’t a difficulty setting, but enemies are fair – it’s just the combination of environmental hazards and awkwardly placed adversaries that make the game incredibly frustrating in areas. However, it’s sporadic and not constant. Upon death, you return to a checkpoint which isn’t always fair.

You can unlock more than the standard two weapons or blessings through progression, but the combat is straightforward. The real challenge comes from the platforming element and having to backtrack in some areas to activate a switch, then run back and do it all again if you’re killed in the process. I didn’t mind the challenge – it’s far from the insanity of Dr. Fetus’ Meat Mean Machine, but it’s overly tricky in areas for the average gamer.

As I Walk Through The Valley…

At the time of writing, there’s a playable demo on Steam. I’d encourage you to try this out as it’s good – especially if you like pixel art platformers. Alas, I couldn’t finish it in the time I allocated, but that’s down to my ability rather than the gameplay.

There are a few extras in the game, including concept art, and this was a really cool feature as it puts the designs in context. Without seeing this artwork, I thought the character design was a little cute, but compared to those extras, it was different altogether. A bit like the DVD extras of old – a bonus.

Verdict

Challenging but entertaining, Reaper of Immortals is a cool indie game that is well worth the asking price. As mentioned, there’s a demo you can play first if you can’t take my word for it, but as it stands, it deserves a download of the demo at the least – especially if you like indie pixel art platformers.