For a lot of us, our biggest exposure to Greek mythology is probably either a high school English class or the God of War series. That’s a shame, really, because once you dig into it, there is a ton of cool stuff there to explore. Enter Journey For Elysium, a story-driven, VR puzzle game from Publisher Cronos Interactive and developer Mantis Games set within the world of Greek Mythology. That said, you don’t need to know your Aries from your Eris to enjoy this one.
You’ll embody a nameless hero who has recently died. Now you must travel through the land of the dead by boat down the River Styx. That means physically rowing your boat, which I hope doesn’t get too tedious. Your goal is to reach Elysium. Basically, it’s a paradise for heroes. Think Valhalla, if you need a Nordic comparison. The realm of Hades will not let you go that easy, though. You’ll need to use every bit of guile, gall, and ability a hero of your stature would have at their disposal to overcome the challenges in front of you.
Now, at this point, it would be reasonable to ask who exactly this hero is that they deserve an unending paradise. Achilles? Hercules? Jason, or even just one of the Argonauts? Well, the trailer doesn’t do a ton to fill us in on this. But as you journey further through the afterlife, Journey For Elysium promises you’ll find out more about your past.
The game sports a really striking art style that I’m sure will only be more impressive once you are fully immersed in it. Giant statues and gates tower over you. The monochromatic color pallet, using gold as the standout color, really pushes the cold aesthetic that the land of the dead deserves. The art style is heavily inspired by the works of Gustave Doré, a French painter known for his striking black and white depictions of mythological stories (his depiction of Puss in Boots, in particular, is a treat). Those gold highlights will help keep you going in the right direction and let you know what you can interact with.
If you’ve been looking for an excuse to put on your old VR headset, Journey For Elysium may be for you. Now that the Valve Index is back in stock, you might have an excuse to splurge for the upgrade to your setup. In any case, Journey For Elysium will release in Q4 2019. It will be available on Steam for the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift VR systems.