If you were a fan of Terraria then chances are you’re going to have a very good time with Ellada Games debut title, Niffelheim. This is a 2D action exploration game in a Nordic fantasy setting, with a huge hand-drawn world. The game plays very similarly to Terraria and Kingdom.
The hand-drawn world is one of the big attractions to the game at this point and does a stellar job of easing people into the game’s atmosphere and setting. The game’s backgrounds are very pretty and I appreciate the aesthetic. The artists have done a tremendous job. There are presently four playable locations and each of them have distinct differences making them unique. The artwork lends itself well to the game’s atmosphere which features a game world that is heavy on the ancient spirits, quests, combative creatures and a necessity of conquering territory.
The controls need to be straightened out. I ran into a number of issues controlling my viking and overall the movement speed is currently too slow. The game seems lethargic and awkward. This continues into the combat which is sluggish and unnatural. Combat animations seem slow as well. The user interface also needs to be refined and improved upon. It’s not a bad starting point but it can and should be improved significantly to gain greater clarity. I’d also like to see a clever tutorial added to the game. Niffelheim’s gameplay will come naturally to some players but to some it will put them off the game entirely. Thankfully once you learn to play the difficulty curve seems to be fairly shallow.
If it wasn’t for the controls I would have put a lot more time and effort into the game than what I have. Other areas of the game are thoroughly deserving of that time but the controls being as awkward as they are are a massive drawback to the game at this stage of its early access development. If and when they are improved the game stands a chance to be exceptionally good. So good that I can easily envision an ardent player base for the game that spends hundreds of hours within the game’s world. There are other bugs within the game but that is a sign of it being early access as well.
There is more to come from Steamified on Niffelheim. Due to it being Ellada Game’s first game on Steam and there being so much potential clashing with equally as many bugs and current drawbacks buyer beware but greatness is a possibility.