Fimbul is a cold and bitter tale of a Viking warrior who is entrusted to hide Ymnerfir a relic of sort that contains god-like powers. The Jotun want it and will stop at nothing to get it back. You must go to Jotunheim where Sigra awaits and fulfill your destiny and stop Ragnarok from happening. However, first you must find the strength to pick your cold body up off the ground. In a very Viking moment at the beginning of the game your brother appears and wants to spill your blood across the white snow. Of course he almost succeeds but lucky for you it isn’t your time to perish.
The story is displayed in comic book form on the screen for you with zero voice over to go along with the dialogue. It does seem rushed at times but for the most part the story should keep your attention. While the comic book art style looks great it doesn’t carry over to the actual game. The settings for the most part are bland and kept the same colors for the majority of the game. There was a scene in the game where I went into a great hall of a Viking leader and the colors actually stood out. This left me wanting more instances like that in the game but sadly fell short. As you run from place to place the scenery doesn’t change all that much. It almost feels as if you are running in a loop from one snow filled area to another.
The problem doesn’t end there for Fimbul unfortunately as the camera angles can become infuriating at times. While you are running through the forest it really isn’t much of a problem. Running behind trees and losing sense of direction doesn’t hurt the game all that much but doesn’t help it either. The real problem though is during combat. In Fimbul you cannot move the camera position at any point during the game. This hurts the game tremendously when fighting a group of Vikings as some of the enemies have a tendency to wonder off from the battle. You will find yourself searching the outside of the area in most battles for the last Viking to strike down. This is a bad flaw for a game that wants the battles to be intense and quick.
The combat in Fimbul doesn’t struggle as much as the camera angles but it isn’t as exciting as it could’ve been. You can fight with multiple weapons such as a sword, axe or spear and you can even pick up a shield and helmet. The attacks are basic, light and heavy with specials that are added as you progress in the game. Blocking can be daunting at times but rolling out of the way seemed to be more useful. While the combat is fun and you will see blood splatter (It is a Viking game) it does become repetitive. The only special that seemed to have importance in the game was healing as the others come later and the game is very short. Fighting the huge trolls or the giant Jotun will give you some satisfaction but for the most part you won’t feel challenged. As quick as the game begins it ends but it does end in a cool fashion. The Norse mythology is great in the game and the brutality of the Vikings is certainly present. That is the one part where Fimbul shines, if only the developers would have given the rest of the game that attention.
Fimbul was not quite what I was expecting in terms of combat and progression. The fighting is enough to make you care but just a little. The story behind the game and the comic book art style is great. It didn’t carry over though and ultimately hurts the experience. The lack of voice over to fit the dialogue was disappointing and for such a short game it could’ve helped. The fights against the trolls and the Jotun kick up the game a notch but the combat itself needs some work. The last thing to keep in mind is that Fimbul is a very short game. You could finish the entire game in one sitting. I couldn’t recommend purchasing Fimbul at the current $29.99 price tag on the PS4 for this short of a game. With that said, I did enjoy the game. If you love Norse mythology and anything about Vikings and their ferocity, you will probably enjoy the game as well. The story is there the rest of the game just needs to catch up. My advice though, wait for it to go on sale.
Developed by Independent developer Zaxis.
Rating: 7 out 10