Amid Evil: High Fantasy Quake

After Dusk, now the next retro FPS to look for is Amid Evil.

Features (nothing really special, honestly, it’s just a solid old school FPS)

  • SEVEN distinct episodes each featuring a completely different setting and enemies
  • LUDICROUS magical weaponry that can be overcharged with the souls of the dead
  • ENDLESS Hordes of Evil to hone your skills against
  • BRUTAL and adaptive enemy AI that will hunt you down on land, sea and air
  • SPRAWLING non-linear levels filled with secrets and ancient lore
  • MULTITUDES of in-game options + cheat codes for a truly golden PC age experience
  • EPIC original & dynamic soundtrack composed by Andrew Hulshult
  • BUILT in Unreal Engine 4 for cutting edge visuals (even if they are a bit retro)
  • OPTIMIZED to run on a toaster (a pretty nice toaster)

The feature I would highlight is the first one, it changes setting a lot with 7 episodes of 4 levels each one, and each brings some new enemies. So good variety.

The game is in Early Access, I only played the first two levels (my impressions were positive), right now I’m waiting until the game reaches 1.0 to play it fully. Which should be soon, they have releases 6 of 7 planned episodes.

The gameplay is solid and fast, but I what I really like is… the art style. It’s retro yeah, I refer especially in how it uses a weird, otherwordly high fantasy style, almost gaudy, where greens and purples are common, scenarios have an abstract quality (like 90s shooters) that actually kind of makes sense if you are going to fantasy realms, they have with curves and archs and domes everywhere, like it was all designed by a mad wizard, apart from secrets, moving parts, and all that.

It’s hard to explain, but I guess it’s much easier to just show it. Sorry, but time to make your browser suffer! :

In reality, while the enemies use the typical chunky models without that many polygons, the game looks really nice because it uses UE4, in that regard isn’t precisely ‘retro’.

Trailer of the last episode released, that is even more otherwordly than the rest

I’ve been eyeing this one. Might have to dive in.

Devil Daggers meets Heretic! Sorry, HERETIC.

Still, as a former British person, my brain always corrects this to “Amidst Evil”.

Yes, I also made the same connection when I saw that gif… seems like a boss.

I saw the thread title and thought “have people forgotten heretic and hexen existed?”

No! But Heretic and Hexen were Doom-clones, technologically speaking, and this is more a Quake clone, or even between Q2 and Q3, in those years there were a series of games that went ham with the colored lightning.

This is definitely in Quake’s path. Especially the more recent levels with very elaborate geometry and look. Gameplay was also quite slow in Hexen and Heretic, that were slower than Doom, that is slower than Amid Evil.

This is like Quake 3 Arena speed with Quake 1 recent maps (Arcane Dimensions and others), providing a very specific style of complex and beautiful level design that you cannot find anywhere else. But you can find it here, made even better.

There’s something I don’t understand because Dusk is immensely popular while looking like ass. This one instead is a real marvel in both visual and gameplay… but it gets far less attention.

Maybe it’s the lack of “guns”, or maybe there’s something in the gameplay that is done better in Dusk, but I don’t know because Dusk seems to be getting more attention even at first sight, somehow.

The only real big problem is that it’s Unreal engine, and so the lifeblood necessary to make this game an eternal classic is cut off because they cannot allow custom levels and mods.

But the game itself has all the fundamental qualities and potential to be a real eternal classic. It’s excellent. I haven’t delved enough to see if it holds up and delivers, or if it becomes duller, but what’s at the foundation is a pure marvel. It then all depends on how they build on it.

I can think of a few things HRose:

-This game setting may be a bit too out there for some people, while Dusk theme of swamps, wasteland, graveyards desolate towns, and general ‘rust and blood’ themes is more recognizable. And while the graphics are pretty outdated indeed, it really gets very well that ‘rust and blood’ atmosphere and infernal vibes in the later episodes.
-Dusk weapons are on fucking point, they are very sweet to use, from pistols to shotguns to the machinegun. While Amid Evil again could be too unrecognizable, with magical staffs and whatnot, they aren’t as visceral and immediate as a shotgun. And the gore in Dusk also helps with gunplay, while in Amid Evil lots of time you are combating against automatons or abstract blobs or things that don’t feel as good to kill.
-Amid Evil first early access had a less-than-stellar combat, from what I know it was reworked in Episode 4 or a bit before, so some people’s impressions are outdated. From what I read before enemies were very aggressive and just run to attack you, now they use more ranged attacks, have more interesting attack patterns, sometimes they can sidestep/strafe, etc.
-Dusk has been released already so it has received good reviews, but Amid Evil is still in Early Access, so who knows, maybe Amid Evil will also be received very well, eventually. Let’s wait. Also, Dusk is more recognized because it was the ‘pioneer’, the first great retro FPS of the last years, while Amid Evil released later than Dusk, so obviously it gets less recognition, it’s just following the trail that others opened, even if in the end could be a better game.

Why do they avoid mentioning the master of this genre… Daikatana?

You could substitute “Doom” and “Heretic” for “Dusk” and “Amid Evil” in this paragraph. I never got into Heretic because I disliked the feel of combat compared with Doom. Hexen, on the other hand, felt right even though it had a lesser focus on combat.

Incidentally, where is Heretic 2? I loved that game, so much more than the first.

Well, if you try Amid Evil one day, you will see the ‘gunplay’ is better than Heretic, maybe just a bit lower than the level of Dusk. For a fantasy setting, they got something pretty decent.

Oh they are both on my wishlist. :)

The hype cycle starts for the final Episode

The final game gets nearer, here it’s a post explaining the latest changes to Ep 3 and how they are going to retouch the entire game before release.

Damn. Sold.

Holy shit this is good. SO. GOOD.

No Brain! Do it like me and hold strong until the 1.0 version is released!

Hah, I already bought it and played a few levels. Amazing stuff. Wonderful levels, varied weapons and enemies, fun secrets to find, and so violent. I also love how it lets you select your difficulty level.

It looks like an angry kaleidoscope.

More angry kaleidoscope, this time with the final date, June 20th.