One of the games featured on the Steam Game Festival is Unto The End, a gorgeous looking platformer that boasts incredibly challenging, and equally as satisfying combat.
"Unto The End is a hand-crafted cinematic platformer about a desperate journey home. Master combat through improvisation and observation in intense sword fights. Spot opportunities to use artifacts and trade items. An adventure told through your actions, how will you make it home?", the description reads.
The part about the combat cannot be overstated - right from the start, Unto The End makes it clear that button mashing is not the way to go. 2 Ton Studios made sure that almost every enemy feels like a boss by implementing a system that rewards observant players and deliberate moves.
Despite the platformer classification, Unto The End is not big on the standard platforming acrobatics. Don't expect double jumps, or wall jumps for that matter - the physics is more realistic and there's weight behind the movement.
Unto The End's combat tutorial will get you up to speed with the basics - you have a choice of low and high attacks, as well as blocks. There's also the shoulder charge, mastering of which is a literal lifesaver, and dodge, which takes some timing but is invaluable too.
To top it all off, there's a ranged dagger throw, but not the infinite kind - you throw a dagger in Unto The End, and then you go pick it up. Speaking of picking up, reckless play and button-mashing seem to increase the likelihood of dropping the sword, which you'll need to go and pick up before you continue the fight.
As you progress, you will get improved armour. You'll pay for it with the materials you loot from corpses of your enemies and there's a basic crafting system that lets you make torches, daggers and potions. You'll find checkpoints along your path, where you can rest, restore health and upgrade.
Unto The End is one gorgeous game and it owes a lot of its visual appeal to what appear to be hand-painted backgrounds and organic textures. The rest of the visual formula leans on the choice of locations, which is inspired by real-life and, as creators pointed out, is about mustering the courage to step into the unknown.
Unto The End launches this year, but you can give the free demo a go thanks to the Steam Game Festival.