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Achilles: Legends Untold Early Access Review

Check out our Early Access Review of Achilles: Legends Untold

When it comes to Soulslikes, the idea is to become more powerful over time. However, no matter how powerful you become, one wrong move will get you killed. Beating a good Soulslike is all about patience, confidence, and knowledge. Just like a balance beam, you can easily fall off at any point if you just misstep slightly.

And Achilles: Legends Untold is a pretty great example of this. You deal a lot of damage, quite quickly. But, you also get damaged easily too. The problem is, that healing is in short supply, and death means losing the souls you’ve earnt to unlock skills to make you more powerful. Just like any other Soulslike, Achilles pushes you to become better through patience, confidence, and knowledge.

“Battles felt long and sometimes stressful, but they were extremely rewarding to win. But very, very frustrating to lose.”

We’re getting ahead of ourselves. Achilles: Legends Untold is an indie Soulslike Action-RPG from Dark Point Games. Achilles starts with the biggest monument to Achilles’ legend, defeating Hector outside of Troy. But, it also is where Achilles first meets his demise, killed in Troy by Paris. The next part is where the “Legends Untold” story comes in, as Achilles is resurrected by none other than Hades, cursed to resurrect upon death, and set on a mission from Hades himself.

Achilles Legends Untold Early Access Review Combat
Dark Point Games

Achilles: Legends Untold holds many similar traits to that of any other Soulslike. You’ve got your light attack, heavy attack, rolling, blocking, Souls (to unlock skills), and Shrines of Hades, the “bonfire” for Achilles. Enemies are vicious, and block consistently, meaning you’re kept on your toes with each encounter. Battles felt long and sometimes stressful, but they were extremely rewarding to win. But very, very frustrating to lose.

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Unlike, say Elden Ring, Achilles: Legends Untold feels very unbalanced. My complaints for the beta released earlier this year were that Achilles struggled in some places due to a lack of Shrines of Hades, as well as the fact that there was a lack of Souls, as well as skills being fairly expensive. Unfortunately, it seems much of my feedback wasn’t taken into consideration. Other Soulslikes seem to up the cost of skills over time to match how far you are into the game, but the skills in Achilles feel way too pricy.

“I earn those times when I kill a difficult boss or reach the next shrine. But when I die, it doesn’t feel like the game earned it”

Weirdly, the beta was also a remade version of the tutorial level. In the opening level, Achilles is actually stupidly powerful, able to regenerate health with ease and dominate each battle. It teaches you the basics of combat before you’re killed by Paris and resurrected to be powerless. In many single-player games, this is common, but in a Soulslike, it doesn’t really help teach you anything. I would’ve honestly preferred if the story remained the same but the tutorial was the beta, allowing you to understand the mechanics more within the first 30 minutes.

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Much of what I felt in the Achilles: Legends Untold beta remains intact, however, at full release. The combat is exciting, the exploration is enticing, and boss battles feel like battles of attrition. Achilles is a Soulslike in nature, but its attempt at retelling and using a mythological story makes it very interesting. Finding little nooks and crannies to earn valuable resources for upgrading weapons as well as simply surviving is as great as it was in the beta. Unfortunately, it just seems that Achilles feels choppy at times, slightly clunky, and a bit too slow.

Achilles Legends Untold Early Access Shrine
Dark Point Games

I find this all a bit too frustrating. Dying and the general idea of death is a part of the Soulslike genre, it’s expected. However, I earn those times when I kill a difficult boss or reach the next shrine. But when I die, it doesn’t feel like the game earned it, it just gets a sigh from me as I retry again, and again. If you can persevere with the game, and get more powerful, it gets better. But I’m afraid that many players will find it too annoying and leave before the game gets good.

With enough changing, fine-tuning, and listening to feedback from players, Dark Point Games could certainly make Achilles: Legends Untold feel worthy of the legend that the game is based upon. However, it’s currently clunky, unbalanced, and filled with artificial difficulty that can frustrate players at the opening of the true game. Achilles: Legends Untold suffers from trying to please the hardcore audience of the Soulslike genre while trying to meet some casual players in the middle. However, despite the negatives, Achilles has fun core gameplay, exciting exploration, and it runs pretty well. But, it’s going to need a lot more work before it can match the legends of Greek mythology.

A code was provided by the publisher for the purpose of this review.

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