A Promising Debut: Enshrouded's Strengths and Areas for Improvement

A small group of people at Keen Games have created a truly respectable title

by Sededin Dedovic
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A Promising Debut: Enshrouded's Strengths and Areas for Improvement
© IGN / Youtube channel

It's not uncommon for small studios to punch above their weight, and Keen Games is no exception. While their previous title, Valheim, cast a long shadow, Enshrouded is carving its own path. It's best described as an action RPG with survival elements, with a strong emphasis on the former.

While there is base building and resource management, they are less punishing and can even be ignored if desired. Hunger and thirst, the usual basics of survival, are absent, replaced by a focus on exploration, combat, and narrative discovery.

This will give you more time to devote to research, which is one of the more positive aspects of the game. Unlike procedurally generated worlds, Enshrouded offers a meticulously crafted environment. This approach, while potentially limiting replayability, allows for a more intentional and impactful experience.

The world, huge even in early access, is beautifully designed and rewarding to explore. You are guaranteed many hours of fun, the world is very interesting and full of mysteries that will hold the players' attention throughout the game.

Abandoned settlements, puzzling puzzles and platforming challenges are hidden within ruined castles and sprawling underground complexes. The mystical blue mist that envelops certain areas adds another layer of depth and mystery.

Venture into the Shroud limits your time and throws you into combat skirmishes while requiring careful navigation. With four biomes covering 40% of the planned map already available, there's plenty to discover, further enhanced by a grappling hook and paraglider to traverse.

You will be able to go from one area to another in several ways, after all, the game always offers you several possible choices throughout the game for various challenges.

Storytelling through subtlety

While the narrative takes a backseat, Enshrouded still weaves the story through scrolls, books, and environmental details, similar to the approach popularized by From Software.

While it's currently underrated, it's a step above the typical survival experience, we haven't played a game with a more similar survivor mode in the handful of games these days.

Enshrouded gameplay© WildGamerSK / Youtube channel

Enshrouded shines in its RPG elements, especially character creation and combat.

Players can choose from 12 different classes, allowing them to customize their experience and even multi-class through a Diablo-like skill tree. You will be able to focus on specific skills to further improve your character in a specific area.

Although the game is completely single-player, the 16-player multiplayer allows classes to truly shine through specialized roles such as healer, DPS, and tank. Everyone has their own role in the match, and it can be seen that the developers put a lot of effort into the multiplayer mode, which we have to admit looks great.

The combat system is fast and engaging, with quick punches, jumps, throws and a parrying system reminiscent of other games of this type. However, while combat offers versatility in terms of class selection, individual enemy and boss encounters currently lack variety.

One drawback is that since the weapons are quite similar both in appearance and in the damage they cause, there is a slight difference between the strongest and the weakest weapons. However, as we have already said, the world is beautiful, full of details with many challenges where you will have dozens of hours of fun and exploration - The basic building, although limited to certain zones, offers impressive customization options.

Players can change building aesthetics, materials and shapes, creating structures of their choice. However, it will not affect the flow of the game and your abilities, changing the appearance of buildings is purely for fun.

Enshrouded gameplay© WildGamerSK / Youtube channel

Although the game has a lot of impressive fight scenes, it seems that the developers only focused on offense and not defense. Defense shields are quite limited and you don't have the option of upgrading, which is rarely seen in modern titles of this and similar genres.

Although we have listed a few flaws of this game, they are less significant, the biggest flaw of the game is the optimization at higher graphics settings. While the overall audio-visual presentation is impressive, performance is a pain even on powerful hardware.

Many mistakes and bugs, but since an update has been announced soon, we hope that this will be resolved. Enshrouded tries to be a successful mix of genres, drawing inspiration from various well-known titles. Although it mostly succeeds in providing a responsive and pleasant experience, it stumbles in certain aspects, especially optimization.

The game could benefit from more challenging and varied survival mechanics and enemy encounters. However, the game already offers a beautiful and expansive world with many days of fun and exploration. Essenceshrouded is truly a unique gaming experience, although it has features from several titles, this game stands out as a future potential leader of this genre. We recommend that you give the game a chance, and dive into the incredible world of challenges. 8.5/10

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