Hint of Absolver.
Graphically the world feels like Absolver, which is an ocean of high detail games is not just an oddity, but an overdue and very welcome one, the lack of texture detail, simplicity of the soundtrack, and world design adds a haunting vibe that makes the game feel both primordial and whimsical, yep you got me using fancy words here A44!
A dab of Dark Souls.
Narrative wise the world is very much the dark, dying world of Dark Souls, and while it adds its hint of flavour to the dreary, bleak future of humanity, fans of Dark Souls lore will enjoy the setting of Ashen.
Pinch of Jedi Academy.
Combat is reminiscent of Jedi academy with well-timed attacks and parries the difference between life and death, fans of Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy will have no trouble adapting to the combat here.
Smidgen of Tofu.
The multiplayer in Ashen is a kinda silent coexistence, you will run into quiet players occasionally who may help you in your journey for a short while before carrying on with their own adventure all the while never engaging in any form communication apart from the limited follow me that the game allows, while this seems in itself anti-social, it is bizarrely social on a primitive level and feels right in the dark setting of the world.
An excellent stew to behold.
Combining all these elements has created something genuinely glorious to behold, with a simple yet captivating story, a minimalist yet inviting world and simple to pick up, challenging to master combat controls, players of all skill levels will find something to enjoy in Ashen.
And tasty to eat!
I enjoyed the game very much, but I know for some the art style will not only be jarring but a deal-breaker, its rather simplistic which I found a refreshing change, the lack of detail in the character and world models make way for a significant focus on game mechanics, which to me is very reminiscent of the late 90’s titles, when graphically most genres had stagnated into a rut, waiting for consumer hardware to evolve, during which games focused more on the mechanical aspects of gameplay, rather than pointlessly pushing the graphical boundaries beyond what device could support.
Available Now on Xbox One and PC (Epic Game Store & Microsoft Store)
It’s on GamePass!
Do I prefer XBOX to PC? No, I don’t and never will.
However, I cannot dispute the value of the XBOX Game Pass, with Ashen and over 100 other games included its a great way to try a whole smorgasbord of games for the price of a good beer.
But wait there is more, Xbox Game Pass is now also for the PC.
Finally, I can play all my favourite games from Microsoft on my gaming Pc, Xbox One has its place, but being able to play on my rig? Priceless!