“Niffelheim” is a side-scroller game in the vein of “Barbarian”, “Ghosts & Ghouls” or “GODS”.  Your quest is to fight your way to Valhalla, after being waylaid to “Niffelheim”, whilst defeating enemies on the way, and constructing buildings, building farms and going on quests. Before starting the game, you are given a choice of who your character will be, from a choice of four, each of which has different attributes.

niffelheim character selection

This is what the character selection screen looks like in “Niffelheim” (you can play as four different characters in the game, and those would be the following: Viking, Valkyrie, Berserker and Shaman).

After selecting a character, you then select what sort of world your hapless Viking will be starting in. Once you start, you get placed outside your starting hut, where you can start your quest for a better (after) life.  The game operates on a day/night cycle and shows the number of days that have passed since you arrived.

niffelheim the world creation screen

“Niffelheim” is a pretty complex game as there is a continual need for food, building upgrades and much more.

You move left and right across the landscape, picking up twigs, taking berries and such from the bushes and surrounding areas. You also come across various small animals that you can kill for food, which is important to staying alive. Furthermore, you will come across walking skeletons as well, which are harder to defeat.

Every so often, you’ll come across various buildings that you can enter, explore and take many items from. It’s also here that you’ll meet the more dangerous foes, including spiders. On a positive side not though, most of these monsters drop important items for you. In other words, it’s well worth fighting them.

niffelheim lady death is coming

“Niffelheim” offers some rather nice graphics and animations (even though most of the animations are somewhat limited), the same could also be said about the game’s soundtrack.

Fighting usually involves kicking and clubbing your opponents, unless you have activated your bow – in which case, your attacks can be performed at a longer range. However, your arrows are limited, and thus you will soon need to resort to using a club.

niffelheim night time

I find Niffelheim’s multiplayer mode to be really entertaining.

Exploring these buildings will take a while, as they are setup in a maze-like manner…With doors leading all over the place, so it is easy to get lost (although there is a map). However, this doesn’t mean there isn’t anything to do, as eventually you’ll come across walls that need mining. It’s generally here that you find that all your weapons and tools have a limited life. So once they have broken, you will need to find some sort of replacement.

niffelheim the inventory system

Niffelheim’s inventory system is pretty simple and straight forward. So it shouldn’t be a big deal for anyone who’s used to the standard RPG inventory formula.

However, not all the buildings are for exploring – a lot are where you will craft your own food or build new devices. You see, if you die, you sometimes end up as a ghost whereby you need to find your body to resurrect yourself – other times you get placed outside your initial hut.

niffelheim the world map

Say hello to the world of “Niffelheim”, or to be exact, the world map of “Niffelheim”.

The wide variety of items to be collected means a formidable inventory system is needed, and this game doesn’t skimp on that either – one handy item is being able to eat food directly from the list without needing to equip it first (and that’s something which I find to be rather handy).

niffelheim when death calls

“Niffelheim” is with no doubt a great game, but it’s far from flawless. For example, combat is limited in movements, there are some grammatical errors, and the game could be seen as too slow for some players.

Other than that, once you reach the edge of the land; you get the ability to choose to travel to a different location, where you do more of the same: Scavenge and fight. There is also a world map showing the different areas. There is a multiplayer mode, although there is just a handful of servers that are running the game.

Nevertheless, at the end of the day. I still think that “Niffelheim” is a really good and interesting 2D action side-scroller/strategy/RPG (despite the cons that I have brought up in this review). So if you’re into 2D action side-scroller’s, RPG’s and strategy games, then “Niffelheim” might just be the game for you.

Pros:
+ Nice graphics, if somewhat limited in animation
+ Multiplayer mode
+ The music is nice (the sound effects are pretty basic though)
+ Pretty complex game with the continual need for food, building upgrades and everything else

Cons:
– Few playing multiplayer game
– Could be too slow for some
– Repeatedly pressing buttons resets fighting/chopping actions, which is annoying
– Some grammatical errors
– Combat is limited in movements

Gameplay: 3/5
Graphics: 4/5
Sound and music: 3/5
Controls: 4/5
Replay value: 3/5
Story: 3/5

tgg grade 4 out of 5

Verdict: 4/5
“Niffelheim” is an interesting game with no doubt. As it offers many places to explore, items to pick and enemies to defeat. So if you like your strategy games slow and steady, then look no further than “Niffelheim”. However, for those who prefer action over exploring, then “Niffelheim” may come out as a bit of a dull game.

Title: Niffelheim
Developer: Ellada Games
Format: PC
Genre: 2D action side-scroller/strategy/RPG
Resolution: User-defined
Release date: 2018-09-26
Difficulty: User-defined
Spent time: +2 hours
Average grade internationally:  N/AGamerankings.com
PEGI age rating:
+12
Price: 16,79 Euros via Steam

Nicholas Kingsley
The Gaming Ground
Twitter: @sku_te

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