the execution quite right. The setting and story ticked so many boxes for me, but having to deal with the iffy controls, sketchy performance, and buggy gameplay just made it a bit of a laborious experience to play through.
Check out a gallery of screenshots down below:
Aztech Forgotten Gods tells the story of a future where the Aztec civilization didn’t collapse, but instead thrived and embraced technology to strengthen their standing within the world. Prosperity doesn’t always bring with it peace though, which is something the Aztec people find out when protagonist Achtli accidentally awakens destructive gods who wreak havoc on the Aztec metropolis. Using the powers instilled in her by an ancient artifact, she must face them head on and try to bring an end to the threat.
I really enjoyed the narrative, with Aztec culture one that’s not always explored in video games. Of course, the futuristic take on it ensures that it remains out of the ordinary, but the setting itself was always alluring to explore. The characters that assist Achtli on her journey are likable too, and whilst the lack of voice acting did see the game lack some cinematic effect, it didn’t stop the interactions being enjoyable and adding to the overall storytelling.
“Achtli’s goal is to take down the fearsome gods roaming across the land, with her newfound Lightkeeper (the artifact that merges its powers into her arm) not only helping her dish out some damage but also leap high into the sky and glide through the air.”
Unfortunately, when it comes to gameplay, Aztech Forgotten Gods falters quite a bit. Achtli’s goal is to take down the fearsome gods roaming across the land, with her newfound Lightkeeper (the artifact that merges its powers into her arm) not only helping her dish out some damage but also leap high into the sky and glide through the air. In many ways it can be fun to use, especially when soaring through some of the open environments, but the controls of the game never feel quite right. Launching yourself into the air can feel awkward thanks to an iffy camera, whilst the fact that you slowly glide back down means that it can often be difficult to position yourself perfectly in specific spots to land. The amount of times I found myself simply falling back down to ground level because the game made it difficult to see where I was actually going was just frustrating.
The combat isn’t much better either, especially against the smaller foes you find loitering around the world. Not only did it feel like a button-mashing experience with little thought, but the auto-targeting system was glitchy and often saw Achtli launching herself all over the place but missing her target or being out of view of the camera. Again, like flying, it just felt unnecessarily awkward and like I was never fully in control of my actions.
Fighting Aztech Forgotten Gods’ bigger bosses was a lot more interesting at least, with some creative creatures to face off against that demand a bit more strategy to defeat. You’ll have to avoid dangerous attacks, fly across the area to get at them, and be more careful when lining up your attacks – I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have fun taking them on, with these battles showing how good Aztech Forgotten Gods might have been if it managed to nail the other elements of its design.
These boss battles have some issues too though, with the awkward camera often making it difficult to navigate around them thanks to their bigger size. They could cause a few glitches to occur too, with one seemingly getting stuck in an attack animation where I wasn’t able to damage them, another seeing me get stuck in the environment when trying to fly around, and another seemed to just refuse to attack me. It’s a real shame because their design was really impressive, but like a lot of aspects of Aztech Forgotten Gods, the execution was just off.
“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have fun taking the bosses on, with these battles showing how good Aztech Forgotten Gods might have been if it managed to nail the other elements of its design.”
It made Aztech Forgotten Gods feel a bit difficult to play; not because it was hard but rather because it just wasn’t particularly fun. It’s a shame too, because I loved seeing more of the unique world and encountering the gods themselves, whilst there’s even room for player customisation with Achtli not only able to be changed up cosmetically but also unlocking new abilities as you progress. Again though, these aspects are held back by a frame rate than never feels quite smooth and some visual inconsistencies that could see some aspects of the world look a little iffy. It just never looked or felt like a PlayStation 5 release.
Aztech Forgotten Gods Review
Aztech Forgotten Gods is a game that has some cool ideas, but just doesn’t nail the execution and is instead left feeling like a bit of a mess. Between the fiddly controls, awkward camera, and buggy gameplay, it was hard to enjoy playing the game – even if it did show its potential with the interesting boss fights and world design.
If the developer can get some patches out to fix the game’s buggier aspects, Aztech Forgotten Gods could be fun to play. As it stands though? It’s really hard to recommend.
Platform(s): PlayStation 5 (Reviewed), PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC