Top Critic Average
If you're looking for something laid back, beautifully drawn, and well orchestrated with some intense, but not overly difficult, boss battles, then Jotun is easy to recommend. It's a magical ride that I'm sure I'll revisit from time to time in the future. Even though the whole experience only lasts just over five hours, it is five solid hours.
Jotun promised a lot with its Kickstarter campaign, but it has delivered on all fronts. A wonderfully crafted adventure based on Norse mythology, players will find themselves engrossed in the world of Jotun from start to finish. The art style is gorgeous, the soundtrack is epic, and the boss battles are tense. A few flaws crop up, but enough is done elsewhere to make up for it in the end.
If you'd like to be told a striking tale of past and future, while being treated to magnificent visuals and a genuinely varied and challenging gameplay experience, then I think you need to get yourself Jotun and be prepared for the wonder. Just brace yourself for those boss encounters, and don't say I didn't warn you!
If you're looking for a beautiful world to explore and great boss battles to be had you can't go wrong with Jotun. For $15.00 on Steam you'll certainly get your money's worth. It won't be easy to earn the gods' favor, but it's something you'll be playing again and again in order to do it.
At the end of my journey through Jotun, I was left wanting more of the excellent mythological world to explore and experience. Despite very minor frame rate dips and the occasional glitchy element, the beauty and wonder of Jotun unfolds like a storybook and deserves attention.
My only real complaints against the game are that it's short, and there's not much to do as far as deep combat or customization go. But clearly that's neither the intent nor desire of Jotun, and that's cool. It's a wonderful, dazzling little world Thunder Lotus created, and you just might learn something while you're playing. May you die with honour, sons and daughters of Odin.
Jotun is a beautiful game. The simple controls are easy to use, and the game's adventure is great. After each level, Thora monologues on her situation, expanding upon her backstory and her current situation. Fans of Norse mythology would be hard pressed to skip this game, plus the challenge from battling the Jotun is too great to pass up.
Jotun weaves a tale not about some battle between good or evil, nor does the game construct some "damn-the-gods" narrative about the triumph of the human over unfeeling deities. Instead, Jotun treats its subject with the reverence of a Norse Edda, turning the elements of an ancient poetic tradition into a digital myth.
Considering the premise and the presentation, I sincerely expected more from Thora's Odyssey: the atmosphere might be there, the overall style might be fascinating and some ideas might be interesting, but that is not enough to truly impress the gods when the core gameplay is a bit lacking and never fully satisfying.
Review in Italian | Read full review
It comes down to what you're looking for in a game. If you enjoy challenge, I think you'll find the game to have that for you at times. It rewards exploration with powers and life upgrades, but punishes it with a singular checkpoint system. It's short in length, depending on your skill set, or recognition of possible patterns in boss fights. Their use of lore is appropriate and measured, but again, being a short experience, most players will want more of it. The visual style is an impressive feat from a small team, but for my tastes needed some additional refinement. But that strong Icelandic voice over is all win.
Jotun relies too much on its impressive face value presentation. The gameplay is far too poor on a multitude of degrees - the combat (or lack thereof), the walking distance between anything of interest, the lack of checkpoints, and the overall lacklustre game structure. The art direction is definitely an iota that will catch the interests of many, but many more will not be pleased with the game itself. Few Valkyries will be willing to recruit Thora as an einherjar, and very few players will enjoy the journey of Jotun.