Fimbul - Switch Review

Barely escaping from your burning homestead that your brother set ablaze, it doesn’t take long for his axe to leave you dead in the snow. Essentially being pieced back together by the Norns, you escape Jotunheim back to Midgard and your original body not quite knowing why you aren’t dead but knowing that your brother is going to pay for the crimes he just committed.

Fimbul by Zaxis is an action adventure based in Norse mythology and from a conceptual view point sounded like it would be an incredible tale. Unfortunately, there is so much wrong with this adventure that it made for a frustrating experience that often had me wanting to do nothing more than put it down or think to myself that maybe the Norns should have left our protagonist to die in the snow.

I can’t comment upon how the performance is on the other systems, but for the Switch, both handheld and inside of its cradle, it’s horrendous. Moving through the lands is laggy and every five seconds as you are moving across the very white landscape with not that much to see, there’s the loading icon right in the middle of the screen holding you back. Worse than that, is even while you’re moving, trees would often appear after I’ve moved past them letting me know that there was a forest there and not just a snowy hill.

Combat which looked like a lot of fun is extremely boring. You swing with a sword, axe or spear at your enemies which are often severely outnumbering you and you whack at them until they fall to the ground as you can’t really die with the “combo” system in place that just lets you put down a healing totem. Hit a few enemies in the giant crowd that just came at you, heal by summoning a totem from the accumulated combo meter, hit them some more.

Even the boss fights that looked like they were going to be fun were just, hit hit hit, move away, hit hit hit, move away, maybe heal if you messed up, and then poof, enemy dead, move along. There was no real combos per say, just swinging your heart out until all of your enemies were dead and there was no real different of which weapon you used to do it.

Finally, the narrative, which is a gorgeous looking comic book style which is about the only color that you’ll see outside of red, is poorly translated and often had me re-reading the order in various ways to see what actually just happened. The boxes are often not in the right order, there’s often no real flow, and to top it off, the language itself could have used some refinement as I often felt that something was lost in translation.

Honestly? As excited as I was to get my hands on Fimbul as Norse mythology is a great one, and pretty hot right now between the Thor movies, The Iron Druid novels and the newest God of War, Fimbul, the winter before Ragnarok, will not be making its way to the halls of Valhalla. It really should have gone through much more testing and refinement because it has the elements to be a great title, but the execution and the approach taken is just not there.

Game Information

Nintendo Switch
Wild River Games
Single Player
Other Platform(s):
Sony PlayStation 4
Microsoft Xbox One

Provided by Publisher

Article by Pierre-Yves


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