Eternal Edge is a Action Adventure RPG developed by Righteous Weasel Games and starring a main character named Cross. I think these devs might be familiar with the gift of righteousness. Theology aside, the topic at hand is how good is this latest offering on the eShop?
The world is in a bit of a bad state. The Skeleton King has a floating castle and is causing havoc for everyone. Cross, with his mentor and friends have decided to put an end to the menace and free the world in which they inhabit. However a lot of things go wrong and after a bad skirmish with the Skeleton King, it now seems like the fate of the world rests on Cross’ shoulders. So setting out on a adventure to gain strength to take on the evil overlord, you, the player are free to explore the world presented to you.
The events I just described serves as the tutorial. Combat, equiping gear and all that. From there you are left to explore as you please. Having a similar setup to Breath of the Wild, you are free to go where you want, but the enemies in a certain area will most likely give you some serious trouble. The combat on offer in Eternal Edge is fairly basic there aren’t many variations in weapons or actual attacks as you playthrough. You have your basic slash, block with shield if equipped and use magic or a special skill if you’ve found some. It is a shame, cause after a while it does become a bit tedious as your approach to most enemies is the same.
Levelling up is done in a different way from your typical action RPG. There’s no experience points to be gained here, but instead you find items called “Matrix’s” these items once found will boost a specific stat. It is an interesting idea the plus side is that it makes sidequests and searching the land well worth it, as each treasure box you find may include one. On the otherhand having each Matrix raise a specific stat was a bit odd as you can pick to specialize in either physical combat or magic combat, meaning you may find a magic matrix, but for you it is pointless.
You have a grand choice of equipment to choose from, but as mentioned none ever feel too different and it mostly boils down to equipping the one with the higher stats. Some weapons do vary. There are one handed and two handed ones, but it is a shame that such a prominent mechanic like combat is a bit lacking
One thing that really caught my eye was just how impressive the size of the world was as I roamed it. On offer here is a good balance of size, but without barreness. Some open worlds feel like they could cut down on size as you basically traverse empty spaces, but the case is different here. As you wander the hills you will encounter mini events where you will have to defend a civilian, capture a fortress, liberate a town or defeat a set amount of enemies. Typically a reward is a matrix so they are well worth doing.
The actual design of the world and its inhabitants is quite interesting and presents a strange contrast. You have your typical fantasy settings Winterlands, The Great Plains, but then you also have a place called Rage City filled with neon signs and robots. Whereas the Winterlands are home to werewolves.
Spread around the map are 8 bit dungeons that are filled with treasure to be grabbed and depending on their location can be seriously diffiult or a walk in the park. The camera swaps to a birdseye view as you tackle a variety of enemies from bats to dragons to gain the treasure inside.
Then you have the main dungeons that you must complete a number of missions to enter and possess a certain amount of Matrix to enter. The inspiration from Zelda is clear, as the first one I entered had me pick up a key and search for the right place to use it and having me scratch my head trying to figure out how to solve the issue of crossing a gap.
Graphics and Sound
Visually, Eternal Edge will be hit and miss for some. Sporting a pixelated style that some would associate with a title like Minecraft, it by no means is visual masterpiece, but at the same time it isn’t trying to be. I must comment though that whilst models up close where simply OK, sometimes the view of the world really was excellent, but with some technical issues I will touch upon soon. The soundtrack? Oh, the soundtrack was lovely. Fitting each location perfectly and giving perfect ambience as you search high and low for enemies and chests. It was relaxing when it was meant to be and ful of energy when a fight broke out. A very solid soundtrack indeed.
Let’s Get Technical
Eternal Edge has some issues, the combat isn’t bad, but lacking and the story whilst serviceable and having some good comedy notes is nothing spectacular. This however is the games biggest flaw and one that can’t be overlooked. It is a bit of a technical mess. Framerate issues, pop in, loading screens during fights and falling through the floor are quite common depending on the location you find yourself in. Now, I must stress. I have not once encountered any gamebreaking glitch, but for someone who normally is quite relaxed when it comes to docking points for things like this, I have to make the point that Eternal Edge does suffer from them. As I said nothing gamebreaking though.
Wrapping Things Up
I nearly forgot to mention the drop in multiplayer with up to four friends. I never got to play with four people, but with two it was a good bit of fun. The camera focuses on Cross and in dungeons it can be a little frustrating, but nevertheless a good bit of silly fun to have with a friend.
System reviewed on: Nintendo Switch.
Disclaimer: A review code for Eternal Edge was provided by Righteous Weasel Games.