Indie in Ancient Greek Style – Apotheon Review

The title screen of Apotheon

The prepared odes for the release of Apotheon, unfortunately, were not needed. There was even a thought to post a dozen or so screenshots without any explanations and give the game a neutral verdict like “it’s worth it with a discount” – it’s really hard to present such beauty in a bad light, but we can only admit the unpleasant truth. What are you saying? We’re not being arrogant, we’re not!

In reality, we genuinely liked the virtual ancient Greek battles at first. No wonder: a quality Metroidvania-style platformer with simple battles and a branching world of side quests is rare to find these days, let alone in such a setting. There was already no need for clichés about a hero challenging the entire Olympus when there is so much encouraged external activity around. Just run and wield a sword, enjoying… um… new swords.

An action scene from the game

As it turned out later, Apotheon requires and offers practically nothing except killing. The locations are teeming with enemies of all kinds – from hypothetical “red” soldiers to chimeras and other legendary creatures – and every task comes down to depleting another life bar for the greater good. While everyone around is giving passionate speeches, you are plundering grand sanctuaries, smashing, breaking, and chopping. There is no other significant interaction with the glorious Greek heritage.

The supposedly well-developed combat system tries to compensate for this chaos, but in its haste, it constantly stumbles and sniffs the marble floor. The main cause of most troubles is the controls, unusually unfriendly and treacherous. At the initial levels, it is completely incomprehensible, and after a long adaptation, numerous additional problems arise. Random weapon throws, unjustifiably long switching, fluctuating running speed – these are nuances that you will have to tolerate throughout the game.

Hereda's pathos monologue listens with the face of an extremely gifted person

Our protégé listens to Hera’s pompous monologue with the face of an extremely gifted person.

The fights themselves quickly become boring. To have enough of jumping and chopping, it takes literally an hour or two, despite the extensive arsenal, the intricacies of striking, the ability to craft, and a considerable number of upgrades. Boss battles and rare puzzle episodes stand out from the overall picture, thanks to which the level of interest is at least maintained at an acceptable level.

From the abyss of despair and deep offense, Apotheon, as you can easily guess, draws its ambiance. From a stylistic point of view, there are no complaints – they definitely made an effort to convey the mood and color of ancient Greek painting. Alientrap seems to have devoured a couple of pets in this period of history, because behind the ancient appearance hides a significant layer of corresponding mythology and the way of life of Hellas, so the correct names and titles are in place. However, shedding blood with a xiphos is no more fun than with an ordinary blade.

Encounter with a creature named Chimera

And yet, how everything could have turned out, just imagine. Original design, good mechanics with a classic touch, and a solid knowledge of the subject – Apotheon had all the familiar symptoms of an indie masterpiece, but the diagnosis was not confirmed.

Action, Adventure, RPG, Indie
Release Date:
Editor's rating:
Is it worth playing? (If the score is more than 70%)



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