Sundered: Eldritch Edition developed by Thunder Lotus Games (the same team behind Jotun) is a metroidvania game with stunning graphics. The story follows Eshe who finds herself in a mysterious ancient ruin where she is bound to Trapezohedron, an ancient force that allows her to fight her way through the world she now finds herself permanently trapped in.
The game follows the standard metroidvania recipe of 2D platforming, non-linear progression and various weapons and upgrades scattered around the world, each potentially unlocking other areas of the map. In Sundered every time you die (or return the the start area) you get to spend all the shards you’ve collected on permanent upgrades and face the newly randomised map again. Key rooms remain in place but the various paths to get there may change. The enemies aren’t overly diverse but are stronger in later areas, you will also find they sometimes attack in hordes which will have you mashing buttons while you cling on for dear life.
As you progress through the game and acquire new skills you will also come across elder shards. These will give you an interesting dilemma that determines the end outcome of the game – you can chose to corrupt your skills moving you towards the dark and corrupted side or you can destroy the shards for a random skill upgrade and a pile of shards to spend on upgrades. As the story progresses and you defeat more bosses you learn that the ancient Eldritch powers that once inhabited these ruins were at war with the Valkyries – humans with advanced technology set to destroy the magical beings. You fight corrupted versions of both factions as you navigate the ruins.
I am personally not a major platformer player or fan of metroidvania style games, but the artwork on Sundered really pulled me in. The Thunder Lotus team has some serious pedigree in terms of other games like Jotun: Valhalla Edition and Spiritfarer. The artwork on Sundered: Eldritch Edition really hits the mark. The gameplay and combat mechanics are also really satisfying, especially as you get more and more powerful and unlock the various skills. I did find the charged attacks a little hard to use and the enemies can get a little repetitive (especially when the mini-bosses are just more powerful versions of them). The choice between corruption and purity adds a nice bit of depth and replay value to the game – making you think about your choices and the path you would like to take.
Brand new the game will set you back around £15.49, but it’s available for free for PS Plus Extra tier and often on sale for quite cheap on other platforms anywhere from £1.50 on Kinguin to £12 on CDKeys. You will get decent playtime out of the game (around 10-15 hours) and it even has a reasonable amount of replay value in terms of which path you end up choosing. There is even an option to play up to 4 player co-op (if you have enough controllers) in Magnate of the Gong (not the full game). Overall I would seriously consider picking this game up and if you’re a metroidvania fan then absolutely check it out.
- You can destroy your elder shards in order to get a large amount of shards and a random skill upgrade (this is unlocked in the skill tree and you have to upgrade your way to it).
- You can use elder shards to corrupt your powers making them more powerful or giving them key modifications.
- Corrupting the gravity boots is particularly useful as it allows you to crawl up any wall that you come into contact with (rather than having to start at its base with just the boots).
- Sometimes it’s worth just running through an area in an attempt to unlock a shortcut or to get to a specific perk.
- The gong room in the left/2nd area is much easier to complete once you have the grappling hook.
- Check out the complete guide on corrupting or incinerating shards below.
- Getting the skill that allows you to see treasure on the map will also show you the locations of secret elder shards scattered throughout the world.
- Complete guide to corrupted and upgrades abilities: https://www.player.one/sundered-guide-abilities-corrupted-upgraded-elder-shards-final-boss-118701
- Game on CDKeys
- Game on Kinguin
- Wiki: https://sundered.fandom.com/wiki/Sundered_Wiki