Achilles: Legends Untold Second Preview

Achilles: Legends Untold by developer and publisher Dark Point GamesPC (Steam) preview written by Pierre-Yves with a copy provided by the publisher.

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes 

Having taken a first action packed look at Achilles: Legends Untold in early February, Dark Point Games' third person isometric Soulslike has now hit Early Access. Moving from the catered experience that left no dull moment as Achilles stormed into the city of Troy to showcase everything that could be done, this new look takes its time and puts things into a more narrative perspective.

Originally having access to leveling up with the souls of the defeated (Fate) through the various shrines to the Greek God of the Underworld Hades, this new look will have you storming right through a more streamlined Troy with near invincibility and no inside optional areas. Adding in auto regeneration for your health and most enemies including the bosses of Hector and Paris are nothing more than a joke when they were once fearsome foes… until you die at the end of the battle and are sent to Tartarus in the Underworld.

Striking a deal with Hades to not spend a bleak eternity for your afterlife, you are sent back to the real world where the adventure starts for real and the fangs of your enemies become very real within this Soulslike. Immediately put to work, you'll be tasked with finding Hades' nephew Hephaestus as something seems to be holding them up. Picking up a sword that has seen better days, you head out.

The first look that we got of Achilles: Legends Untold was a very catered experience which had a singular path forward with just two small side areas to showcase what could be in store for players. Unlike that first look, this new Early Access build takes all of that originally displayed awesome and adds in a world reminiscent of Titan's Quest, Grim Dawn and Diablo. Not to be confused with a hack & slash though, Achilles' adventure is very refreshing as it instead takes the Soulslike formula and makes it its own under a third person isometric view not unlike Sands of Aura also currently within Early Access.

The latest version of Achilles is actually kind of hard as you’ll often find yourself alone against multiple foes managing both melee and ranged, standard and tanky foes making you question if it’s even currently worth it. In the end it always is as you’ll need Fate in order to level up and eventually once you find Hephaestus level up your gear, but there will be times that you’ll want to simply run straight through a crowd to get back to where you last died especially if it was for the fourth or fifth time.

This is where I found myself both loving and hating Achilles’ adventure. On one hand, the more open world with plenty of paths forward was great as it allows for the flexibility of choice. Do you follow the “Fable 2” dust line forward to your goal, or do you go explore the other direction for better gear and other loot? This can often lead to items that are the difference between an easy time and a hell of one. On the other hand, there are some enemy types because of how this world is designed that are simply “unfair” such as archers with precision aim and do way too much damage. Oftentimes they come in pairs or squads leaving no place to really hide or angles to shield yourself.

Other than the archers, the other enemies seemed decent enough from the more straightforward grunts to the more heavily armored captions before getting into the tanks that are walking walls of muscle that you’ll definitely want to get out of the way of. Human or otherwise. Could some balancing be done? Yes. Can this often be overcome with an armor upgrade or leveling up? Also yes. It is Soulslike after all and if you can’t beat them, grind a bit and then crush them afterwards!

Leveling up is simple enough and can be done at any Shrine of Hades as long as you’ve accumulated enough Fate. What I really enjoyed about this aspect isn’t that you could level individual stats and learn new abilities through a skill tree set in the form of a constellation, it was that it didn’t reset the world every time you did it. Most Soulslikes, if you “rest” at one of these points everything defeated will respawn and you’ll have to do it all over again. Here, that is a choice. You can level up as needed, or, you can level up as needed and then select the option to “rest” which will then respawn the world. Having that choice was fantastic.

Finally, while eventually mowing my way through the currently available content, there are certain areas where instead of accumulating Fate, you’ll instead be accumulating points that can eventually be turned into Fate through a multiplier depending on how far down you go through the dungeon. You get a bit of a taste of this midway through the adventure and I look forward to seeing more of what could be done with it as it would really help to level, as long as you survive of course.

In terms of issues, Achilles is in Early Access and I did have to restart my adventure once or twice from scratch because of some game breaking bugs but that’s to be expected in the early versions. What this allowed me to do is take different points of view from taking out absolutely everything around me to running right through and seeing what I could accomplish if I didn’t have certain items or gear that had been collected. Did it suck to lose 4-6 hours at a time? Sure, but it really let me dive into everything that was there a few times even if I was grumbly about it after the second time.

Otherwise, Achilles Legend Untold is in decent shape but there are some areas that will need some polishing (See Known Issues and Player Feedback) but that’s what Early Access is for. The developers at Dark Point Games are already working hard to polish things up and release new patches (See Patch 0.1.1 from May 13) so it’s entirely possible some of the above listed may not even be an issue once you take the dive into this Greek Mythology based Soulslike.

Score: N/A



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