Thora, the undead viking warrior!
Jotun is an indie game by Thunder Lotus Games. It’s made up of two things: exploration and boss fights. You play as a female viking warrior who died a dishonorable death and has to prove herself to the Norse gods (the Jotun) to be able to enter Valhalla. It’s a BEAUTIFUL hand drawn 3rd person action-exploration game with fantastic presentation and quality.
You explore the areas finding the runes and fighting the bosses. You’re fed the back story of Thora as you progress. Along the way you can collect Ithunn’s Apples, which increase your lifebar, and you find the god shrines which grant you with god powers such as healing, shields that surround you and protect you from damage, Thor’s hammer, ect… These powers help with the boss fights and are a welcome variety to the combat. Each of the areas have a different gameplay mechanic or environmental thing you have to deal with like being frozen by the blizzard winds, or being burned by the lava bursting through the cracks in the ground.
The controls are simple and straight forward with a normal attack and slow heavy attack, as well as god powers and a dodge roll. The gameplay is a little bit slower, Thora runs and swings her battle axe kinda slow. During boss fights when you get an opening to attack you might only get 2 or 3 swings in. It’s not a bad thing, I actually enjoy the pace of the gameplay, especially with how fast and twitchy a lot of games are now.
The boss fights are very unique and varied. They’re absolutely the highlights of the game. If you’re a fan of Dark Souls and other games like it, you’ll enjoy the boss fights. You have to study and learn the patterns, know when to attack and when to stay back and evade attacks. The beginning of the fight is pretty easy but when you do enough damage, the boss brings out new moves and changes things up. I love it. You can tell they put a lot of thought and effort in to each boss. Plus the hand drawn animations are gorgeous to watch.
The game was a little hard to get into at first because it doesn’t really tell you what to do or where to go in that first area. You’re just supposed to explore around and you’ll figure it out. You learn the game by just playing it. I got a little bit lost and confused navigating some of the levels because the map is pretty vague. It gives you a basic idea of what the area looks like but doesn’t identify where you are on the map. The level where you walk on the tree branches was tough to navigate.
If you enjoy these types of games you should definitely go check it out.