Norse mythology has been tragically underused in gaming, but we’ve had a few titles in recent years that took a stab at vikings, elves, and long winters. Eternity: The Last Unicorn offers up its own take on Norse mythology with one elf’s quest to protect her race’s immortality by saving the last living unicorn.
The game makes big promises, but can it deliver on the epic RPG experience? Let’s find out.
Strong Story, Messy Gameplay
From a story perspective, Eternity: The Last Unicorn has a great framework. The basis in Norse mythology offers plenty of artistic freedom, and the stakes of the adventure set the stage for what could be a great tale.
You play as Aurehen, an elf who must restore peace to Alfheim by saving the last living unicorn. As part of the lore, the unicorns were the source of immortality for all elves, so if this final one dies, the entire race suffers.
I really enjoyed the opening cutscene and the setup. The lore had me interested in where the story would go. Unfortunately, the gameplay quickly revealed itself to be a dealbreaker for me.
From the moment you start playing Eternity, you’ll notice that the camera is fixed. Much like classic horror games, this RPG has fixed angles for each scene, which is fine, but it takes some getting used to. The benefit, of course, is that you get some nice vistas and the framing.
There’s a crafting system in place that, while not incredible, works as intended. It’s the combat and difficulty that I took issue with. For the first part of the game, I noticed that the combat felt clunky and unresponsive, but it was functional.
The problem is that the developers wanted to go for a souls level of difficulty, and even then the difficulty seems to slide wildly in one direction or the other from fight-to-fight. I don’t mind a challenging game, but if you’re going to make it tough it needs to have responsive combat and consistent difficulty, neither of which can be found in Eternity.
One perfect example is early in the game. After fighting several groups of enemies and coming out relatively unscathed, I entered a cave and was ambushed by a group of enemies. Okay, so far so good. The fixed camera shift didn’t give me much time to respond, so I was hit a few times right away and lost all my health.
I came back a second time, ready to do battle. Before I could get a swing in, they took me down again. This time it was a single hit. The attack looked the same, it didn’t appear to be a heavy attack, so why the sudden change?
I tested the scenario several more times and got different results every time. It was enough to make me walk away in frustration. It’s painful to criticize Eternity: The Last Unicorn so harshly, because it had potential to be a great little RPG, but it simply doesn’t have the chops to justify its difficulty.
What you’re left with is a game that requires an almost infinite level of patience, and even then, the satisfaction you get from success never quite comes.
A Rickety Presentation
Eternity: The Last Unicorn is, at times, a very nice looking game. Some of the vistas and environments are impressive, but when you examine the details, it becomes less so. Animations are stiff and there’s a shimmer across surfaces that makes everything look more jagged than it should be.
Honestly, if the developers decided to patch in a lower difficulty, I would deal with the clunky combat, because I like the world and story that Eternity: The Last Unicorn has to offer. As it stands, however, this unicorn won’t be getting saved anytime soon.
Final Score: 5.0/10
A copy of Eternity: The Last Unicorn was provided to PS4 Experts for review purposes
Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert date - 3/27/19